4th Annual MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference to bring sports industry leaders to Boston on March 6, 2010

ESPN named new presenting sponsor; new location at Boston Convention & Exhibition Center to handle conference’s rapid growth

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., February 3, 2010 — The MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference kicks off its fourth year on March 6, 2010 with a new presenting sponsor and a roster of speakers that will include NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, EPL and NBA owners, coaches, and industry leaders, and the journalists that follow them.

ESPN has agreed to become the presenting sponsor of the MIT Sloan School of Management’s most popular conference, says Daryl Morey, an MIT Sloan alumnus and general manager of the Houston Rockets, who co-chairs the conference.

“ESPN has always been about NEXT and the use of analytics in sports, which, in a short time, has become the next critical tool in building a championship caliber team,” says Morey.

Says John A. Walsh, ESPN executive editor, “Analytics are increasingly playing a bigger role in the sports conversation. They are even stirring up controversy in some quarters. Who knew? This conference has a history of helping us understand the dynamics of analytics. So, yes, ESPN would want to be part of this conversation."

Last year’s sold-out conference, which included a keynote panel featuring Boston Celtics All-Star Guard Ray Allen, attracted more than 450 industry leaders and students. To accommodate a projected doubling of participants, the conference will this year be held at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.

Dallas Mavericks Owner Mark Cuban will again highlight the Basketball Analytics panel. “I wouldn’t miss ‘Geekapalooza’ for anything,” says Cuban. “This is the cutting edge of analysis. I recommend that no other NBA teams attend.”

Other confirmed speakers to date include:

  • Michael Lewis, author of The Blind Side and Moneyball
  • Jonathan Kraft, president of the New England Patriots
  • Jon Gruden, Monday Night Football analyst and former head coach, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • Hannah Storm, anchor and reporter, ESPN
  • Avery Johnson, TV analyst and former head coach, Dallas Mavericks
  • Buck Showalter, TV analyst and former manager, Texas Rangers
  • Bill Polian, president, Indianapolis Colts
  • Bill Simmons, author of The Book of Basketball and ESPN columnist
  • Mark Waller, CMO, NFL
  • Peter Moore, president, EA Sports
  • Adam Silver, COO and deputy commissioner, NBA
  • Steve Pagliuca, managing partner, Boston Celtics
  • Sunil Gulati, president, U.S. Soccer Federation

Slated topics are:

  • What Geeks Don’t Get: The Limits of Moneyball
  • Next Generation Sports Management and Ownership
  • Baseball, Basketball, Emerging, and Coaching Analytics
  • International Expansion of Sports
  • High-Tech Fan Interaction and Advertising
  • Performance Enhancement: Will Future Athletes Be Formula 1 or NASCAR?

“Analytics is not the future of sports, it is playing a critical role in defining sports today,” says conference co-chair Jessica Gelman, director of New Business Development and Operational Initiatives for the Kraft Sports Group and New England Patriots. “This is illustrated by the growth of the conference – the doubling in attendance each year, and the incredibly high quality of speakers who are involved. If people are interested in sports and the forefront of change, they make a point to be here.”

To register for or for more information on the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, please visit http://www.sloansportsconference.com/2010/ or contact Ben Schlesinger at ben@sloansportsconference.com.

For press inquiries, please contact Patricia Favreau at pfavreau@mit.edu

The 4th Annual MIT Sloan Analytics Conference is organized by the MIT Sloan Entertainment, Media & Sports Club, which was formed in 2001 as a student-run organization to fulfill the growing interest at the MBA program in the business of entertainment, media, and sports. For more information on the club, please visit: http://sloanems.org

42 Analytics was founded in 2009 with a mission to develop and disseminate the leading edge of sports business knowledge.

For Media Inquiries

Paul Denning
Director of Media Relations
Tel: 617-253-0576
Fax: 617-253-5875
E-mail: denning@mit.edu

Patricia Favreau
Associate Director of Media Relations
Tel: 617-253-3492
Fax: 617-253-5875
E-mail: pfavreau@mit.edu