Sophisticated analytics underpin elite world sport, informing all aspects from draft picks to training regimes to game strategy.
Analysts work alongside coaches, as ‘mini-coaches’, producing reports on player match-ups, strengths and weaknesses, player monitoring, injury prediction and other factors influencing the game.
A first of its kind, we’ve developed Australasia’s only Master of Sports Analytics in close consultation with sport clubs and data collection companies to meet the global industry’s exploding demand.
The future of sport is big data
In America 90 per cent of Major League Baseball teams and 80 per cent of National Basketball Association teams employ data analysts*.
The discipline is growing quickly in Australia, sports analytics has been flagged as a priority area by the largest sports organisations including the AFL, AIS, NRL and A-League.
‘If you’re a graduate with data science and sport science qualifications, you’re going to be very, very competitive in the elite sport job market,’ says industry leader Stuart Morgan.
Associate Professor Morgan is our Master of Sports Analytics Course Coordinator, with over 15 years’ industry experience. He previously worked as the Senior Analyst in the Performance Research department at the Australian Institute of Sport, and has a PhD in sensory neuroscience.
At the AIS, Morgan says he looked to employ professionals who knew sport inside-out, could use cutting-edge data technology and translate findings into real-world wins. ‘But we didn’t find many people with these advanced expertise.’
Be part of the next-gen of sports scientists
The new Master of Sports Analytics course builds on our reputation as the country’s leading university for teaching and research in sport.
Those enrolled will gain advanced skills in data handling and analytics. They’ll be taught with the tools and datasets used in the top echelon of sport, including Catapult, Champion Data and Hudl.
Students will learn how to clearly communicate insights using data visualisation techniques taught in our state-of-art VisLabs.
Students can take advantage of La Trobe Sport’s industry partners, including Melbourne City FC, Carlton FC, Optus and Catapult to access unique research and work opportunities.
Here, they’ll be able to gain invaluable on-the-job experience in a high-pressure sports environment and develop their professional network.
Our $150million world-class Sports Park, being built as we speak, will further provide students with a living laboratory to put their theory into practice.
The Sports Park will include an eight-court indoor multisport stadium, hockey and soccer pitches and strength and conditioning training facilities that will cement engagement between elite sport user groups and our teaching and research expertise.
‘It will provide a really fantastic opportunity where we can have a world-class sports facility and test out our latest, cutting-edge sports analytics performance tools – many of which our students will learn to build and design themselves,’ says Morgan.
Graduate career pathways
The Master of Sports Analytics has been developed with two career pathways in mind. Firstly, it’s designed for computer science and sports science graduates who want to work specifically as sports analysts.
‘If you want to do that kind of work, there is nowhere I’m aware of in Australia that will train you to build the technical and quantitative skills you need to add on top of your sports science expertise.
‘If you want to be a sports analyst you need to understand sport and you need to be able to handle data analysis. Our course is going to provide students with that combination of skills. That’s Pathway A,’ says Morgan.
As for Pathway B, Morgan points out ‘Regardless of the area you want to end up in – whether you want to be the best sports scientist in high-performance sport or the best strength and conditioning coach in Australia – the amount of data you’re going to be exposed to is going to be massively greater than say 10-15 years ago.
‘You are making yourself more competitive in a highly competitive job market by having these extra skills that make you a hybrid sports scientist,’ says Morgan.
‘These are the two fundamental areas where job opportunities are enhanced by doing this course.’
Find out more about studying Australasia’s first Master of Sports Analytics.
* Temple University, Institute for Business and Information Technology, Sports Analytics: Advancing Decision Making Through Technology and Data