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Volume 24 No. 156

Labor and Agents

CAA Sports' Jimmy Sexton is the "first agent to represent both coaches in a BCS championship game," and "few figures will loom larger" over the BCS finale than him, according to a profile by Pete Thamel of Not only does he represent Florida State's Jimbo Fisher and Auburn's Gus Malzahn, but he also was "a central figure" in the Texas coaching search. That coincided with "a chain reaction of raises for Sexton clients," including Fisher, Malzahn, Alabama's Nick Saban and UCLA's Jim Mora. The "flurry of speculation and contract extensions has further cemented Sexton's power in college football." Sexton "bristles at the perception of him as a 'Darth Vader figure' -- his words -- lording over the sport, but his influence is real." Former Tennessee AD Mike Hamilton said, "He carries a lot of power in college athletics. When everything happened with Mack Brown at Texas, I said to myself, 'A lot of guys are going to get paid and Jimmy will have a role in that.'" Thamel wrote Sexton is "smooth but not slick, affable without being phony and blunt without being offensive." Sexton said, "I always felt like the best negotiations are where you get what you want, but no one hates you for it." Sexton recently became "one of the heads of the football division" at CAA. The "intrigue in Sexton stems, in part, from the perceived conflicts of interest that surround his college operation." Sexton reps five of the 14 SEC coaches, and his job also includes "recruiting potential player clients from programs in which he represents the coaches." ADs acknowledge Sexton's "perceived role as puppeteer, but they're also quick to credit him for the relationships he's built." Thamel: "One thing that can't be denied is the influence Sexton wields in college football, particularly in the Southeast corridor" (, 1/3).