View From Section U: A Gift For Isenberg

As I mentioned when I first started my Wednesday View From Section U feature I wanted to write about more than just the UMass hockey program but subjects of interest relating to the university itself.  Last week the Sports Management department of the Isenberg School of Management announced that they received a monumental gift consisting of the archives of Mark McCormack.  Who is Mark McCormack?  He is seen as the father of the sports management industry.  His first client was none other than golf legend Arnold Palmer and with his representation of the golfer started the sports management firm IMG, the largest in the world.  IMG represents athletes, puts on sporting events around the world, and producer of sports TV.

For UMass to be chosen to host the archives of a pioneer of an entire industry is a huge honor and speaks to the elite stature of the school’s sports management program.  That program, in conjunction with the gift, will now be known as the McCormack Sports Management Program.  I personally was not part of the sports management program although there are certainly times when I wish I had been.  My graduate degree however is from the Isenberg School of Management and I did have the chance to take a class in sports marketing, which taught me more about marketing concepts than my core marketing classes.

The UMass sports management department has put out a staggering amount of alumni who are now in high level positions among all in sports.  I no longer am surprised when I hear that this MLB general manager, or that NBA league office executive, or some ESPN honcho holds a degree from UMass.   The McCormack papers doesn’t establish the department’s place among the elite in the nation, it merely solidifies it.  One would think all those well-placed alumni in various positions in sport would have to benefit the athletic programs back at the alma mater.  But that’s something that’s tough to measure.  Either way, as a fan of sport and an alum of UMass it was nice to see one of the jewels of the flagship campus get even that more of a shine to it with this tremendous gift made last week.


Did I say something about alumni from the sports management program all over the country?  Oh yeah, recruit John Parker’s coach, Kevin Patrick, is one of them.  Patrick started his coaching career at Deerfield Academy and has been an assistant at Union, Bowling Green, and Wisconsin.

Speaking of recruits, today marked the beginning of the fall signing period.  Parker and Kevin Boyle have already signed theirs.  To my knowledge Shane Walsh has not as of yet.  This may also be a time when we learn of new committed recruits to the program.  Too bad Parker already signed his because his Lumberjacks had a clever fan event surrounding signing day.  Think UMass could have a similar event where we all gather around a fax machine and wait for LOIs to come in?

Dick Baker has a short blurb on UNH rounding out the corners of Lake Whitt.