Concordia University Chicago & SMWW / Doctorate in Leadership: Sports Leadership

Reach the Pinnacle of Your Academic Career Online with a Doctorate in Leadership: Sports Leadership

With Concordia University Chicago and SMWW you can achieve the highest academic level awarded. Both the Ed.D or Ph.D in Leadership: Sports Leadership are completed fully online.

To work in the sports education or research field a doctorate is often a necessary stepping stone to achieve the intellectual standards essential to thrive. But a doctorate can do much more for you than propel you in those two sectors. 

Dr. Adrian Griffin -Toronto Raptors Asst. Coach, CUC President, Dr. Nick Nurse - Toronto Raptors Head Coach, and Dr. Lynn Lashbrook

An Ed.D or Ph.D in Leadership: Sports Leadership can be the path to an executive role with a professional team, a leader in a sports agency, an expert in the financial and economic aspects of sports business or a CEO of anything from sports television networks to sports marketing firms.  

The program focuses on sports leadership, including the management of large teams of people, sports law, economics, finance, and other essential skills required to stand out in the over $700 billion global sports industry. 

When you’ve achieved a doctoral degree, you’ve displayed a dedication to your craft that not many others can boast. Only 1.68% of the US population over 25 years old has their doctorate - this is a degree that can change the way you are viewed in the sports industry. 

Concordia University of Chicago (CUC), offers a 100% online Ed.D or Ph.D in Leadership: Sports Leadership, which means you can keep your day job and earn while you learn. Plus, our doctorate course is affordable, often less than 1/3 of the price of other advanced degree programs.

When you register through SMWW you will be given a discounted rate, guaranteed through the end of your doctoral program!

Dr. Adrian Griffin -Toronto Raptors Asst. Coach, CUC President, Dr. Nick Nurse - Toronto Raptors Head Coach, and Dr. Lynn Lashbrook

SMWW’s Industry Leading Courses Featured In:


Application Deadline:

Application is due:  August 19, 2024 |  Classes Start:   August 26, 2024


Online education is the perfect way for hard at work people to complete an advanced degree. You get the flexibility of learning at your pace and your time, while also being able to achieve a degree from a respected and accredited university.

Finally, a Doctorate Program Designed for Busy People!

The program develops well-rounded students, with multiple options to choose from in your education and a wide range of careers they can pursue after graduation including:

•    Education
•    Research
•    Sports Agent
•    Player Personnel
•    Operations
•    Media, PR, and Communications
•    Community Relations
•    Front Office Management
•    Sports Marketing
•    Athletic Director
•    Sports Information Director
•    Compliance Officer
•    Game Day Operations Director
•    NCAA Academic Advisor
•    Director of Ticket Operations
•    Director of Fundraising and Development
•    Coach
•    Professor of Sports Management
•    Fan & Event Management
•    Scout


Program Curriculum:

Ed.D.: 61 semester hours
Ph.D.: 67 semester hours

Leadership Courses (15 Credits)

  • EDL 7120 Research Based Decision
  • LDR 7000 Leadership Theories & Practice
  • LDR 7010 Developing Human Capital
  • LDR 7020 Leading the Knowledge Enterprise
  • LDR 7030 Promoting and Leading Change

Sports Specialization (15 Credits)

  • SPML 7010 Advanced Topics Sports Administration
  • SPML 7020 Seminar in Sports Marketing
  • SPML 7030 Seminar in Advanced Sports Economics & Finance
  • SPML 7050 Essentials of Law in Sports
  • SPML 7085 Sports Analytics

Foundations/Philosophy/Ethics (Required) (12 credits)

  • EDL 7141 Organizational Change
  • FPR 7011 Phil & Foundations of Leadership
  • EDL 7211 Policy Analysis
  • SPML 7040 Sports Leadership & Ethics

Research and Statistics (10 - 16 credits)

For the EdD, Practitioner Track (10 hours)

  • RES 7900 Research Design (4)
  • RES 7605 Quantitative Analysis
  • RES 7700 Qualitative Research

For the PhD, Researcher Track (16 hours)

  • RES 7900 Research Design (4)
  • RES 7605 Quantitative Analysis
  • RES 7700 Qualitative Research
  • RES 7800 Mixed Methods Research
  • RES 7620 Advanced Topics in Statistics OR Res 7710 Advanced Topics in Qualitative Analysis

Comprehensive Exam and Dissertation (9 credits)

  • COMPS 7000 Comprehensive Exam (fee)
  • DISS 7010, DISS 7020, and DISS 7030
  • DISS 8000 Dissertation Supervision (fee)

NBA Coach of the Year Nick Nurse and Toronoto Raptors Assistant Coach Adrian Griffin Graduate from CUC with Phd Degrees

Concordia University Chicago (CUC) offers two (2) 8 weeks sessions within a 16-week term. Students can register for 2 courses per term - one in the first 8-week session and one in the second 8-week session. The tuition fee is $711 per credit hour. (Technology fee an addition $16 per credit hour).

There are Numerous Benefits to Attending CUC

  • Courses are 100% online, you can take them from anywhere
  • There is no residency requirement
  • The program starts every 8 weeks
  • Coursework is designed for those working in sports, so you can keep working!
  • Includes live interactive zoom video chats with sports executives
  • Federal Financial Aid is available
  • Accredited university with a 150+ year history of preparing leaders
  • Affordable – often less than 1/3 the cost of other sports leadership programs

There are Numerous Benefits to Being a Part of SMWW:

  • Network with the alumni of SMWW, over 15,000 strong
  • Access and exposure to cutting edge software required by the MLB, NFL, NBA, MLS, and NHL
  • Weekly live interactive zoom video chats with Dr. Lashbrook, fellow sports business students, and sports industry leaders
  • Professional sports resume redesign and letter of reference upon graduation
  • Discounts to the SMWW Conferences including NFL Combine, Baseball Winter Meetings, NBA Summer League, NHL Draft, MLS Draft, and more.
  • Access to the SMWW Staff & Faculty.

A Message from Dr. Lynn Lashbrook

Lynn Lashbrook

Dear Potential Student,

Every day I discuss with people the career opportunities in college athletics and Sports Management. For the past 45 years, I have worked in a variety of sports careers including as a Sports Agent, Athletic Director, Academic Advisor, College Coach, Professor, Scout, and Compliance Officer. I know which careers will benefit from a specific degree and which do not. If you are like most people, you are not aware of the opportunities and how one can break this profession, or even if a degree is a good investment for you. When I started Sports Management Worldwide, I searched for a partnership in Higher Education that understands the importance of an online Masters and Doctorate Program for students who want to obtain a career in college and professional athletics. The Concordia University Chicago Sports Management program exceeds my expectations.

I would welcome the chance to discuss career strategies for your specific goals and background.

Fill out this quick form and I will call you to discuss! Or call me at +1(503)445-7105.

Or if you are ready to apply at Concordia University Chicago, fill out this free application for acceptance.  I know you will be impressed with how quickly they respond. They are a joy to work with and happy to answer your questions. We have a wide range of students, from young people trying to advance their career, to retired professional athletes and sports executives, we can help you become more marketable in the sports industry!

Dr. G. Lynn Lashbrook, Ed.D
President & Founder
Sports Management Worldwide

Still Have Questions?

Contact SMWW's CUC Specialists today! We can answer your questions and offer advice on how you can earn your degree online.

We make the admissions process simple, fast, and easy!

Sports Management Worldwide: 
(503)445-7105 or Toll Free: 1(888)952-4368
or fill out this "Talk to Dr. Lashbrook" form


Admission Checklist For Doctoral Students

Requirements for Admission

A completed Doctoral Application for Admission.

Apply online. Apply here to get the discounted tuition.

Financial Aid Information

Apply for financial aid and/or make arrangements for payment after you've submitted your application. You will need to complete the FAFSA online at It is in your best interest to complete the financial aid process as early as possible. For assistance, call Concordia University financial aid helpline at 708-209-3347.

CUC’s School Code is 001666.

Official Transcripts

Master’s degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Provide official, sealed transcripts from institutions where degrees were earned showing all college/university coursework.


Please submit Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or Millers Analogy Test (MAT) scores. There is no minimum score requirement; however, the score is evaluated by the program coordinator during the application process. GRE or MAT must be taken within the past three years. CUC’s GRE School Code is RA1140. CUC’s MAT School Recipient Code is 2024. Exceptions are applied to those who have past doctorate experience.

Submission of Rationale Statement

Submission of rationale statement, including personal goals for applying for admission to the program. This is included on the application.

Provide information on your future educational goals and/or objectives and their relationship to pursuing graduate work at Concordia University Chicago. This is part of the online application.

Two Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation from two persons qualified to comment on the applicant’s potential for doctoral study. If you need help sending one or both, let us know. It can be difficult to track down past professors and employers for a quick letter. Letters should be from individuals able to comment on the applicant's academic proficiency, personal character, competence, and effectiveness in professional work.

Resume/ CV and Writing Sample

Submit a paper that demonstrates your ability to write in a scholarly manner at a level typical of graduate work. A paper from your master’s program would be most appropriate. This sample should approach, but not exceed, five pages in length.

International Students:

If you are an international student, you must complete the basic steps listed above for your degree and the following information

English as a Second Language TOEFL Scores

Please submit TOEFL score of at least 550 (paper-based) or 72 (internet) minimum requirement on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or successful completion of Level 112 at an English Language School (ELS) unless English is the native language, and an unqualified recommendation from an ELS program director is provided. (International students who have earned an advanced degree from an accredited institution in the United States do not need to submit TOEFL scores.)

Foreign Transcript Evaluation

Any foreign transcripts must be evaluated by a Concordia approved international credentialing service, such as WES (World Education Services) or ECE (Educational Credential Evaluators). Students should request a “Course-by-Course” evaluation and sent to Concordia University Chicago.