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For Ohio University’s Master of Sports Administration alumni, NFL isn’t fantasy, it’s reality

Thursday, September 8 2016 12:00am

Nearly 40 MSA alumni kick off the 2016 season working for the NFL

In 2015, there were 56.8 million people playing fantasy sports in the U.S. and Canada, with the most popular sport being football, according to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association.  

For a large portion of the population, football is focused around watching games and playing fantasy sports– but for Master of Sports Administration alumni from Ohio University’s College of Business, football isn’t just fantasy, it’s reality. 

In the 50 years of the sports administration program at OHIO, many students have gone on to work in the NFL. 

This year, as the 2016 NFL season is about to kick off, more than 71 percent of the teams in the league are represented by front office personnel that hold a master’s degree in sports administration from OHIO. 

A total of 39 alumni work for 23 NFL teams, including one assistant general manager, eight vice presidents, 11 directors and countless other managers, scouts and personnel.  

“Every fall it is exciting to see the increasing number of our alumni working for NFL teams across the country,” said Jim Kahler, executive director of the AECOM Center for Sports Administration. “The breadth of experiences and backgrounds our alumni bring to their respective organizations is a true testament to the diversity of the MSA program.”

See the full list below of Ohio University’s MSA alumni who are working for NFL teams:

Team First Name Last Name Class Year Position
NY Giants Kevin Abrams 1997 Assistant General Manager
Philadelphia Eagles Sean O'Hara 2010 Account Executive – Corporate Partnerships
Dallas Cowboys Jennifer Surgalski 2004 Senior Director, Corporate Partnership Services
Dallas Cowboys Chad Estis 1994 Executive Vice President – Business Operations and President of Legends Global Sales
Dallas Cowboys Joe Simler 2013 Senior Manager – Corporate Partnerships
Dallas Cowboys Eric Sudol 2005 Vice President – Corporate Partnership Sales & Marketing
Washington Redskins Allie Pisching 2012 Director – Community & Charitable Programs
Green Bay Packers Chad Brinker 2014 Pro Scout
Green Bay Packers Andrew Kinn 2014 Executive Assistant – General Manager
Green Bay Packers Jason Wahlers 2001 Director of Public Relations
Detroit Lions Mark Gildersleeve 2012 Senior Manager – Corporate Partnerships
Detroit Lions Bill Keenist 1981 Senior Vice President – Communications
Detroit Lions Joe Kelleher 2008 Regional Scout
Carolina Panthers Edward Elowson 2015 Event Coordinator
Carolina Panthers Mark Koncz 1993 Director of Pro Scouting
Carolina Panthers Ryan Petrus 2012 Guest Relations/Security Manager
Carolina Panthers Becky VanSandt 2012 Guest Relations Assistant
Atlanta Falcons Robert Sibbitts 2014 Premium Sales Consultant
Atlanta Falcons Mal Glazier 2016 Seasonal Corporate Partnership Associate
Tampa Bay Buccaneers Andy Speyer 2002 National Scout
Arizona Cardinals John Drum 1996 Vice President – Stadium Operations
Los Angeles Rams David Sherrill 2001 Assistant Director of Operations
San Francisco 49ers Alexis Pinson 2014 Sales & Service Coordinator
San Francisco 49ers Brent Schoeb 2006 Vice President – Corporate Partnerships (Sales & Services)
NY Jets Andrew Agro 2008 Senior Manager, Corporate Partnerships & Business Development
NY Jets Bruce Speight 1992 Senior Director of Media Relations
Buffalo Bills Scott Berchtold 1980 Senior Vice President – Communications
New England Patriots Monti Ossenfort 2002 Director of College Scouting
Miami Dolphins Brett Brecheisen 2012 Football Communications Manager
Pittsburgh Steelers AJ Poole 2006 Director of Partnership Sales and Activation
Cleveland Browns Jeffrey Engelken 2013 Manager, Guest Services
Cleveland Browns Sean Othen 2011 Manager – Corporate Partnership Sales
Cincinnati Bengals Ryan Holmes 2010 Director of Corporate Sales
Cincinnati Bengals Brian Sells 1991 Vice President – Chief Marketing Officer
Houston Texans Kevin Krajcovic 2006 Football Administration Coordinator
Jacksonville Jaguars Dan Edwards 1984 Senior Vice President – Communications
Jacksonville Jaguars Kirsten Grohs 2013 Manager of Football Administration
Kansas City Chiefs James Royer 1999 Director of Digital Media & Strategy
Denver Broncos Mark Thewes 2000 Director of Team Administration

About the AECOM Center for Sports Administration:

The Center links faculty, students and alumni to sports-related organizations and businesses, emphasizing research and harnessing knowledge to benefit the industry. 

Ohio University's Master of Sports Administration program has been consistently ranked amongst the top in the world. In 2016, the program was ranked as the #1 overall program, #1 online program, #1 graduates’ choice and #1 course leaders’ choice according to the SportBusiness International Postgraduate Sports Course Rankings. 

Media Contact:

Katie Foglia, digital marketing director, AECOM Center for Sports Administration at kf338509@ohio.edu or 740-593-9370.