Tarun Sharma, a Rising 2L with Major League Experience
The recent start of a COVID-shortened Major League Baseball season has special meaning to rising 2L Tarun Sharma, who, before coming to Minnesota Law, worked for two MLB teams. He was an analytics intern for the Arizona Diamondbacks and a baseball operations assistant for the San Francisco Giants. Sharma recently answered a few questions about his interest in the “national pastime,” his experiences at Minnesota Law so far, and his current 1L summer clerkship through Twin Cities Diversity in Practice.
What types of things did you do as a baseball operations assistant for the San Francisco Giants and as an analytics intern for the Arizona Diamondbacks?
In San Francisco, I worked very closely with the amateur and professional player scouting staffs. I had an opportunity to learn about baseball and data analytics from a group that had won three World Series rings in the prior five years by preparing reports for staff, executives, and players. … Working in Arizona was a dream come true because it was my first experience working in professional sports. I will be forever grateful to Dr. Ed Lewis and the small analytics cohort still there who brought me along and taught me what they could about computer coding and scouting players.
Where did your interest in baseball come from? (Have you always been a fan, or was this just a career path you found yourself on?)
My older brother played baseball when I was younger, and I always enjoyed attending his games. My father used to always make time to take me to baseball games whenever we went on road trips. As a result, I’ve had an opportunity to visit 20-plus ballparks for MLB games.
Why did you decide to go to law school? Is it your goal to combine law with your interest in sports?
I decided to pursue my J.D. after my time in San Francisco because I have always dreamed of attending law school. In the future, I’d certainly be open to working with sports clients, but right now, I’m focused on completing my education and gaining as much experiential knowledge as possible.
Why did you select Minnesota Law?
I selected Minnesota Law because of a great conversation that I had with Professor Mitch Zamoff while weighing my options. I heard about and later got to experience the great corporate client base, highly educated population, good food, great music, and of course, sports, that Minnesota has to offer.
What groups/student activities have you been involved with at the Law School? Do you have a favorite Law School experience you’d like to share?
I was on Student Philanthropy Board and in the Sports Law Association (SLA). I’ll be serving as vice president of the SLA and treasurer of the South Asian Law Students Association this year. My favorite experience so far is when Chief Judge Tunheim ’80 held a hearing at the Law School.
This summer you are working virtually for Arthur, Chapman, Kettering, Smetak & Pikala, P.A. and Target through TCDIP’s 1L Rotation Clerkship program. What type of work are you doing? How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your experience?
I am grateful to be part of the TCDIP program this year. With Arthur Chapman and its corporate partner, Target, I have tackled projects relating to real estate, subrogation, and tax practices. Owing to COVID-19, I’ve missed out on enjoying the firm’s seats at Target Field with my colleagues.
Do you participate in any fantasy sports leagues?
I’m in a pretty intense fantasy dynasty baseball league with twenty 40-man rostered teams where fellow 2L and Sports Law Association board member Kyle Ignatius is my co-owner. I also serve as commissioner for a fantasy football league with friends from high school who are now all over the country.
What is your favorite baseball team? And who are your favorites to make the World Series?
I grew up a big New York Mets fan and I was lucky enough to see them play in the 2015 World Series. After my experience of working in the sports industry, I’ve made more of an effort to watch as many great players as possible. My WS Pick: Dodgers/Yankees.
Do you have a favorite sports quote you’d like to share?
“Baseball is almost the only orderly thing in a very unorderly world. If you get three strikes, even the best lawyer in the world can’t get you off.” ―Bill Veeck
Anything else you’d like to share about your law school experiences or interest in sports law?
I want to give a plug to THE best sports law podcast in existence, Conduct Detrimental, for allowing me to offer topic suggestions. You can find my writing on sports law topics via my LinkedIn. Thank you to the new board of the Sports Law Association (Rising 2Ls Colton Messer, Kyle Ignatius, Erin Abramovitz, and Meg Simchuk) for working to build out our sports law program. My hope is for Minnesota Law to one day have a sports and entertainment law publication, course, and clinic. You can support the Sports Law Association by following us on Twitter @UMNSportsLaw and attending our virtual programming this fall. Thank you to the Career Center, especially my counselor, Wendy Griak, for helping me find a great summer employment program. Thank you to my family for their love and support.