Former Ohio State Coach Jim Tressel and Judge Dan A. Polster Speak at Great Lakes Sports and Entertainment Law Academy Certificate Ceremony

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Former Ohio State University football coach Jim Tressel and Judge Dan A. Polster spoke to students attending the Great Lakes Sports and Entertainment Law Academy (GLSELA) at Cleveland-Marshall College of Law as part of the academy’s end of session luncheon and certificate ceremony.

A native of Berea, Ohio, Tressel racked up an impressive 106–22 mark as head coach of the Buckeyes from 2001-10, winning seven Big Ten titles and the 2002 National Championship. His teams appeared in two other BCS National Championship games, and won the Fiesta, Rose and Sugar bowls.  His success in Columbus was preceded by a strong run as head coach at Youngstown State University, where he went 135-57-2 between 1987 and 2000, winning four Division I-AA titles.

Tressel spoke to students about the importance of serving others in their profession while referencing the displayed C|M|LAW slogan of “Learn Law. Live Justice.” He also touched on important characteristics that lead to success individually and as a team – unselfishness, commitment, and curiosity to perform better – and referenced his national championship teams and the role those characteristics played in their ultimate success.

As academy students pursue careers in sports and entertainment law, Tressel spoke on the growing role sports and entertainment play in the fabric of society.   He also cited perseverance and determination as important factors for students looking to break into high-demand fields of employment.

Polster, a federal justice at the United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio for the past 15 years, talked to academy students about the importance of arbitration and mediation in the sports and entertainment industries.  Polster referenced his role in mediation between Eddie DeBartolo Jr. and Denise DeBartolo York in the settlement of their father’s estate, including ownership of the San Francisco 49ers (NFL).

The Great Lakes Sports and Entertainment Law Academy is in its second year and is co-hosted by C|M|LAW as a joint venture with the Case Western Reserve University School of Law.   In this three-week immersion program, law students select a concentration of either sports or entertainment law and participate in corresponding courses designed to prepare them for a career in the given industry.  This unique offering in the law community has drawn students from throughout the country as well as locally. 

The GLSELA is co-directed by Craig Nard, director of the Center for Law, Technology & the Arts at CWRU, and Peter Carfagna, Executive-in-Residence at C|M|LAW and Chairman/CEO of Magis, LLC, a privately owned sports marketing, management and investment company, including family ownership of the Lake County Captains.  Courses are taught by visiting faculty working directly in the sports and entertainment industries. 

Tressel’s and Polster’s appearances concluded an impressive list of guest speakers to present at the 2013 academy: Rick Chryst, Senior VP, Dietz Trott Sports & Entertainment Management; Jason Hillman, General Counsel, Cleveland Cavaliers, Jeff Orloff, COO, SPIRE Institute; John Parry, Athletic Director, Cleveland State University; and Jeff Pacini, VP, Greater Cleveland Sports Commission.  The students have also made visits to the Cleveland Indians, Lake Country Captains and the Cleveland Medical Mart.

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