Sports Agents

Think You Are Not Disposable? Think Again

Brian WestbrookAs an agent in a professional sport, you must count your blessings every night and hope that your current clients do not ditch you for the hundreds of hungry agents working while you sleep.  There are more agents out there than potential clients (at least ones that will make you any money), and most players are wrapped up in the hands of the minority of very successful player representatives.  One agent that I am friendly with gave me some free advice and said, If there is one thing you should do, it is take the names of your clients off of your web page.  You are asking for other agents to take that list and try to steal your clients away from you.  I still debate following his word, but have kept the names of my clients public for the time being.

Whether other agents are approaching your clients or not, you can never be too sure that you have forged a strong relationship with those whom you represent; a relationship where they will smile at you one day and then drop you like a dime the next.  Just look at the Philadelphia Eagles as a case study.

Within a matter of days, Lito Sheppard and Brian Westbrook had dropped their agents and hired new ones.  Sheppard let go of All Pro Sports & Entertainment Inc. in favor of Rosenhaus Sports Representation.  Westbrook said goodbye to Fletcher Smith, who had been basically working for free for the past nine months, and signed Todd France.  Even more proof that there is little loyalty is that Westbrook was managed by Eastern Athletic Services before firing them and hiring his now former agent, Fletcher Smith.

I am not saying that former player agents of Sheppard and Westbrook did not drop the ball.  I am merely noting how easy it is for a player to say goodbye to his agent and that there is little to no recourse.

To view the agencies listed above, please go to the Agencies tab at the top of this page.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.

6 replies on “Think You Are Not Disposable? Think Again”

Are there any sort of contracts agents have their clients sign? If so, are they easy to get out of? That seems like one way to keep clients under your wing. But if that isn’t done, then I guess it comes down to a free for all.

Smart agents will require their clients to sign written agreements. These are often called Standard Representation Agreements or SRAs. Individual leagues may proscribe a uniform contract that a registered advisor must sign with his client as well.

Unfortunately, these contracts are often easy for either party to breach. However, if an agent has performed his duties as proscribed, he is entitled to any work done on behalf of his client up to that point. Example: client signs a 5 year deal with team prior to firing agent. Agent is entitled to commission on entire 5 years of contract.


Thanks for the answer. I figured there was something to protect the agents that have already performed work.

Comments are closed.