“It is going to be next to impossible to get an entry-level job in sports that pays a salary competitive to engineering. Sorry to burst that bubble, but that’s just how it is. There are just too many thousands of sports-loving 21 and 22 year-olds that are willing to get a foot in the door as an intern or for $40,000/yr. The whole thing with a career in sports is that you will love what you do, be underpaid at first, but if you work your way up you can have it both ways.”
Mike Wohl, is someone I have never met before, but he was connected to me by one of the Athletic directors in the Purdue Athletics office who used to work above him during his undergraduate years. Mike is currently a venture capitalist for the Houston Rockets so he does more finance than sports statistics, but from our correspondence I could tell he was brilliant. He gave me more insight and tips on how to maximize my time at the Sports Statistics Conference, he also was one who I trusted to give it to me straight.
The question that prompted him to say the quote above was one I posed, after I told him how my internship with Halliburton would eventually lead to a full time job with a starting salary of at least 75K. I asked him if there were any entry-level jobs in the sports industry that paid as competitively as my “typical” engineering job.
I had a feeling he would respond with something along the lines of that, but I needed to hear it from someone I respected (like him) before I made up my mind.
In addition he did suggest getting an internship in the field (which I have now) in case I ever wanted to get back into the sports industry after having worked and saved up some money as an Industrial Engineer. He also recommended that I read the book The Signal and Noise, by Nate Silver (whom I get to meet in March!) and also anything written by Bill James. Those are definitely things on my reading bucket list after I finish the two books I have now that I got for my birthday and for Christmas from one of my best friends, Karthik, and my boyfriend, Scott.