Fall 2018 Application Now Open

Check out a behind the scenes look into the Master's Program

The University of Oregon has partnered with the sports and outdoor product industry’s best to offer the first-of-its-kind Master of Science in Sports Product Management in Portland, Oregon. Come be a part of our relentless pursuit of excellence.

Join future sports and outdoor product industry leaders to propel your career with hands-on learning from experienced industry veterans.

18-Month Master's Program Timeline

Learn all the skills required in the complete life cycle of sports and outdoor apparel, footwear and equipment during an immersive 18-month program taking place over six 10-week sessions starting in September. 

  • Strategy
  • Ideation
  • Execution
  • Internship
  • International
  • Project
  • Career
Understand the beginning of the product process with how consumer insights drive strategic and brand planning.Turn ideas into reality through product design, development, materials selection and costing.Bring ideas to market through supply chain, marketing, and merchandising.Real world experience. Mandatory for all students. International students have an opportunity to intern for a U.S.-based sports product company. Domestic students are encouraged to intern for a foreign-based sports product company.Learn about managing global business, consumer behavior, and Asian manufacturing.A program-long team project that culminates in a prototype, business plan, and presentation to industry professionals.Students are prepared to launch their career in the sports and outdoor product industry following the program. Students are matched with an industry mentor, visit sports product companies, and receive career coaching throughout the 18 months to ensure they leverage the degree into a career.

“Anyone who earns a spot in this program will be part of an elite group that is highly targeted by sports product company HR managers.”

—Jennifer Ferguson, CEO Handful, Inc.

Long-term Career Advancement

Program graduates are prepared to enter the following types of positions in the sports and outdoor product industry:

  • Product Line Management
  • Product Development
  • Product Merchandising
  • Product Innovation Management
  • Materials Management
  • Product Engineering
  • Demand Planning
  • Product Sourcing & Costing
  • Retail Management
  • Brand Management
  • Factory Management
  • Sustainable Supply Chain Management
The process of using consumer insights and market research to build and manage a product line. Once a product line is built other factors must be considered including: pricing, forecasting, marketing, sales, and retail.The complete process of making designers dreams come true by bringing a new product to life. This includes idea generation, market research and analysis, as well as product design, engineering, materials, costing, and manufacturing prototypes for consumer testing.How a product is presented to make it more appealing to the target consumer. This can be done at a retail in-store level and/or on-line in how products are presented digitally.The creation and introduction into the market of a product that is either new or improved. An emphasis is on new and innovative ways to create and/or introduce the product to market.Decisions related to the selection and utilization of materials used in the product creation process.Sports Product Engineers work with design and marketing to engineer and test prototypes that meet the performance needs of athletes. A business-planning process that results in a product demand forecast. Understanding product demand aids in the planning of production, inventory, sales, and service needs.Sourcing; the procurement practices aimed at finding, evaluating, and engaging suppliers of products and materials. Costing; the process of determining product cost.The business of day-to-day retail store operations. This involves product management, product merchandising, human resources, store operations, and customer service.A marketing function that looks at how a brand is positioned in the market and how to best connect with the brand’s target consumer.Overseeing, designing, and controlling the process of goods production. Utilizing lean manufacturing to ensure optimal efficiency in terms of how inputs (materials, labor, energy) are converted to outputs (goods).A focus on optimization of limited resources such as water and energy, as well as, the reduction of waste in the product supply chain.

Throughout the program students receive support to help them achieve their internship and post-graduation career goals.


In the summer between first and second year, students complete an industry internship that immerses them in a sports or outdoor product company in the U.S. or abroad. All internships are facilitated through the program although students are also welcome to find their own internship placements if they prefer. Watch a video that takes you behind the scenes of an SPM internship.

Our students have interned at an impressive list of companies including:


Students receive support throughout the 18-month degree program through program staff, industry mentors, and instructors. Students are given access to countless sports and outdoor product companies through site visits and guest speakers in addition to domestic and international sports product industry events and experiences. Students are responsible for securing their own post-graduation job placements. Our alumni currently hold positions at numerous domestic and global sports and outdoor product companies including Nike, adidas, Under Armour, Athleta, Icebreaker, Keen, Dakine, and more.

What is Sports Product Management?

  • Keen The product team explains the footwear product creation process.
  • Nike SB The product team explains how they create product for athletes like skateboarding great Paul Rodriguez.
  • adidas Smart Ball product team gives the inside scoop on the creation process behind their innovative ball technology.
  • Handful The team at Handful describes their creation process.

Experienced Instructors

We are the best and deliver the best.

The industry’s top talent educate future leaders through experiential education grounded in innovation, sustainability, and global business perspective. Educators in our program all hold a master's degree or PhD and bring real-world experience and teaching expertise.

Our instructors have extensive professional experience working in leadership roles within various functional areas of large and small sports and outdoor product companies.

We match the hands-on expertise of our instructors with PhD professors who are subject-matter experts and internationally recognized for their research in sports apparel, footwear and equipment.

All educators in our program have impressive teaching experience and have been carefully selected based on being experts in what they’re teaching, being great motivators, and having a sincere interest in mentoring and advising students on their future careers.

Read bios for some of our instructors below and watch us in action.

Instructor of Product Management

John Eberle enjoyed an outstanding career in the sports product industry—leading product development, marketing, and category general management for running, outdoor, and equipment product lines at both large and small brands around the world. For almost 15 years, Eberle directed international businesses for Nike—including equipment and running—which allowed him to visit or reside in nearly 50 countries during that time. Eberle manages the educational experience for second year master’s program students, including acting as director of the SPM Merchandising Lab. He teaches four classes per year with an emphasis on international markets, Go-to-Market, omni-channel retail and students’ capstone projects.

Assistant Clinical Professor

As a former NFL player turned entrepreneur, management consultant and media executive, Dr. Damian Vaughn is an assistant clinical professor for the Sports Product Management Program at the UO Lundquist College of Business. He has founded several companies, including The Vaughn Center, which has served to develop the leadership and positive social impact of the world’s elite athletes and business leaders. He teaches Sports Branding and Strategic Management.

Adjunct Instructor of Management

Brad Wilkins is a leader at the intersection of science and business. He spent over nine years at Nike discovering innovative solutions that translate exercise and environmental physiology using wearable sensor technology, with the aim of connecting athletes to performance. After graduating from Oregon State University with a bachelor’s in exercise science, Wilkins went on to earn his PhD in human physiology from the UO. He teaches Human Physiology.

Associate Professor of Marketing

Dr. Hong Yuan earned her Master’s degree in Applied Economics and Ph.D in Marketing from the University of Michigan. She has published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, Journal of Marketing Research, Management Science, Journal of Retailing, and Journal of Advertising. She teaches Marketing Research.

Leaders of Today Shaping Leaders of Tomorrow

Industry leaders shaped the creation of the University of Oregon Sports Product Management Program and are involved in developing and teaching the curriculum. Each year, the program selects senior professionals to be a part of the Sports Product Management Industry Advisory Board and help steer the program.

2017-2018 Advisory Board members include:

  • adidas
  • Nike
  • Columbia
  • Under Armour
  • Arc'teryx
  • Bemis
  • CamelBak
  • Ching Luh
  • Dakine
  • Danner
  • Fuerst Group
  • Halo Neuroscience
  • Handful
  • HongFu
  • Hydro Flask
  • Inbox Labs
  • Intel
  • KEEN
  • Looptworks
  • The NPD Group
  • OluKai
  • Perry Ellis International
  • Peter Wallmark and Associates
  • Revant Optics
  • Sketchers
  • Sports Gear Co., LTD
  • SYNC Performance
  • Texon
  • VF Corp
  • Wiivv
  • Yakima
  • Yeh Group
  • Additional Members
Mark Colin-Thome VP Brand Operations, BasketballKristin Parrott Senior Director of Human ResourcesSarah (Jolley) Cariaga VP Global MerchandisingSue Galatz Business Director, Nike iDJeff Nichols VP North America Nike DirectSteve Nichols VP Nike Global Strategic Business InitiativesMichelle Aubrey Senior Director, Distributors LAAPJinn Brunk Community Partnership ManagerGuru Larson Environmental ResponsibilityGerard Smith Senior Designer III - EuropeJoan Anderson Sr. Director Material Innovation, FootwearRick Anguilla Senior VP, Brand StrategyAntonio Zea, Jr. Sr. Director, Global Football FootwearLaura Appleton ‎Talent Acquisition and Development ManagerJim Chi Global Director, SportswearJon Austen Sr. Director of Product ManagementMatthew Mitchell Human Resources Business PartnerKelly Wheeler Vice PresidentShawn LaRowe Global VP of Apparel, Equipment and AccessoriesSteve Belatti VP of ProductKatie Kelley Global Leadership Development DirectorDaniel Chao CEOJennifer Ferguson CEOSuzanne Anderson COOJoe Smith Director of R&DNic Pardon CEOEric Lewallen Sports Product Innovation, Wearable ElectronicsKatie Kelley Global Leadership Development DirectorScott Hamlin Co-founder & CEOJulia Day Executive Director, Business Development SportsKerry Konrady VP MarketingCindy Trames SVP Design & Merchandising, Nike Swim – a division of Perry Ellis InternationalPeter Wallmark PrincipalChris Sataua Product ManagerAdan Villalobos Director of Talent AcquisitionKurt Stcokbridge VP of Development and InnovationShirley Justice President Global Strategy & OperationsPhil Shettig CEOSteve James Commercial DirectorDavid Tichiaz VP of MerchandisingShamil Hargovan CEOJoel Grabenstein Director of Category ManagementChris Sautter Product Development Center DirectorDuke Yeh Sustainability ManagerScott DavidsonKate DelhagenLinda GoldsteinKelly HiblerDavid HigdonJohn HullBill InmanSteve Vincent

Industry Connection

Each step of the 18-month journey is rich with connections to the sports and outdoor product industry. 

Industry Mentor: It starts with each student being assigned their own industry mentor. Mentors are introduced to students during the first term to start building an advisory relationship. Mentors are available to ensure students feel supported in their questions about the industry and how to best reach their career goals.

Team Coach: As part of the program-long project, each student team is assigned a team coach from the industry to support them in the journey of bringing their projects from concept all the way to market.

Global Travel: In their first year, students travel to Germany to experience firsthand ISPO Munich, the industry’s largest tradeshow, as well as visit adidas’ world headquarters. The trip is coupled with stops in Baltimore to visit Under Armour’s world headquarters and New York City to experience one of the world’s most influential sports retail markets.

The second year of the program includes travel to Asia. Students travel to several destinations that may include Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Vietnam, and Japan.

A Portland Homebase With a Global Reach

Portland, OR is an alpha cluster in the sports and outdoor product industry. Of the 800+ sports product related companies in Oregon, 90% are located in the greater Portland area, which is home to companies like Nike, adidas, Columbia Sportswear, KEEN, Icebreaker, and more.


There Is No Substitute For Making It Yourself

Two of the most unique parts of the Master of Science in Sports Product Management Program are the SPM Innovation Lab and the SPM go-to-market overview.

The SPM Innovation Lab is a product-making space that provides students with hands-on experience in concept ideation and execution. Students use specialized equipment to design, make, and test prototype sports and outdoor apparel, footwear and equipment.

Go-to-market provides the students with hands-on experience in store design, layout, inventory management, merchandising, product mix, profitability, and marketing through classes, trips, and a merchandising lab.

Contact Us
Learn more about our world-class master’s program, executive education, or events

Join our pursuit of excellence;
apply for the master's program

Register for our executive education workshops