Sports law professor Mark Conrad will give a live CLE presentation on “The Legal Structure of Sports Organizations” on July 31 at 1 p.m. EDT for CLE Companion (https://clecompanion.com/), a legal technology company that is changing the CLE industry by offering an affordable and easy way for attorneys to satisfy their CLE requirement. The talk will be available on-demand on CLE Companion thereafter.
Meanwhile, Evans, the founder and managing attorney at California Sports Lawyer®- a firm that represents entertainment, media, and sports clientele — gave a live CLE presentation entitled E Sports: The Differences between Entertainment and Sports Dealmaking for CLE Companion earlier today, which is now archived at the site.
Evans’ presentation centered on the story of Turner “Tfue” Tenney, a popular esports gamer who was represented by Faze Clan, an esports organization and digital, social, and streaming content network. As part of the relationship, Faze Clan would take a percentage of Tenney’s endorsement deals and winnings from tournaments on Twitch (owned by Amazon/AMZN), which does not seem much different from a sports agency model for an athlete or an entertainment agency like WME/Endeavor or CAA for entertainment, media, and sports talent.
“The question is what rules apply to Tenney and Faze Clan?” said Evans (https://www.csllegal.com/about/). “Is Tenney an athlete, entertainer, or an influencer in the media space? Is Tenney all three designations in one under the law? The focus will be on California since the Golden State is where this author is licensed to practice law, but also because California like New York state have robust laws and regulations for the broad-based field and term of talent representation, which includes varying legislative acts for entertainment, media, and sports individuals and business firms (agencies and attorneys, etc.) in the space.”
Evans holds a Master of Laws (LL.M) in Entertainment, Media, and Sports Law from Pepperdine University School of Law, a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Thomas Jefferson School of Law, a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Political Science with an emphasis in American Politics from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and is currently a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) candidate at the Pepperdine Graziadio Business School. His client’s range from Fortune 500 companies to athletes, entertainers, models, television and film producers, studios, entertainment, media, and sports businesses in contractual, intellectual property, formation, distribution, negotiation, and dealmaking matters.
Prior to opening California Sports Lawyer®, Evans worked as a Graduate Law Clerk at the Superior Court of California, advising judicial officers in civil and criminal law and motion matters. Prior to law school, he worked in accounting and finance for the number one business-only litigation firm in the world, Quinn Emanuel Uquhart & Sullivan LLP, in Los Angeles. He has also worked as a legislative aide and field representative in the California State Legislature and continues to work on local and national campaigns.
Conrad’s Presentation is the First in a Series
Conrad’s presentation is the first segment of a projected holistic series discussing legal aspects of professional and amateur sports. This series, intended for those who wish to obtain a general background in the field for professional or personal interest, may be the first attempt to launch a coordinated series of lectures on this important area of law.
This first portion will discuss the organizational, legal and economic underpinnings of U.S. professional sports leagues, and a comparison between the U.S. models and those of international sports. Issues such as the antitrust consequences of leagues, the relative lack of statutory law that governs sports and the strong reliance on internal rules and regulations in the operations of sports organizations will make up the bulk of the lecture. Also discussed are the increasing calls for a human rights component in sports (both in the U.S. and particularly, internationally). Transparency and ethical rules of governance may be addressed at the conclusion of the presentation (time permitting).
Conrad is Associate Professor of Law and Ethics at Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business, where he directs its sports business concentration. In addition to teaching sports law, he has also taught courses covering contracts, business organizations, and media law. Professor Conrad’s books and articles have appeared in academic, legal and general circulation publications.
His book “The Business of Sports — Off the Field, In the Office, On the News,” (Routledge/Taylor and Francis, 2017) has been cited in leading journals as one of the most comprehensive texts on the subject. He has also published in numerous academic and non-academic journals on various sports law topics, including governance issues, intellectual property, collegiate and international issues.
In addition to his full-time responsibilities at Fordham, Professor Conrad has served as an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s master’s program in Sports Management, St. John’s University School of Law and New York Law School. He has lectured at Northwestern University’s campus on Doha, Qatar and has appeared on panels and symposia at Harvard Law School, Duke University School of Law, the University of Virginia School of Law, as well the law schools of Fordham, Pace, Hofstra, DePaul and Arizona State Universities. He served as president of the Sport and Recreation Law Association from 2014-15 and president of the Alliance for Sport Business from 2016-18.
CLE Companion Executive Director Seeks More Sports Law Presenters
Kristin Davidson, the founder and Executive Director of CLE Companion, said she was excited to have Conrad and Evans lead off her presentations in the sports law area.
“This is just a start,” said Davidson. “I’m looking for more presenters on sports law subjects. In addition, I encourage sports law attorneys to complete their CLE requirement with sports law classes such as these, and the others that will follow. It’s a great way to broaden your expertise, while completing the requirement.”