JAMES J. CORBETT AWARD LUNCHEON
(Tuesday, June 7- 1:00- 2:30 p.m.)
I would like to introduce our head table and I will start with the lower dais. I will start from my right and your left. The first person is from Rhode Island College, Bill Baird; from Indian River Community College, Bob Bottger; from the University of Oregon, Bill Byrne; from the University of Tennessee, Joan
Cronan; from St. Louis Community College at Forest Park, Russ Dippold; from Gannon University, Bud Elwell;
from Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference, Ken Free; from Holyoke Community College, Rick Golas; from Metropolitan State College, Bill Helman; from Iowa State University, J. Elaine Hieber; from California State University-Northridge, Bob Hiegert; from the Big Ten Conference who has left to receive an alumnus award, Phyllis Howlett; from Western Michigan University, Chris Hoyles; from the University of Vermont, Denis Lambert; from Washington & Lee University, Bill McHenry, who has become ill; from the University of Connecticut, Pat Meiser-McKnett; from Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, Bob Moorman; from Wayland Baptist University, Sylvia Nadler; from the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Chuck Smith; from the University of California-San Diego, Judy Sweet; from the University of North Carolina, John Swofford; from Kansas State University, Larry Travis; from Brigham Young University, Glen Tucket; from the College of Wooster, Al Van Wie; and from Denver University, Diane Wendt. That is your NACDA Executive Committee.
The head table, those who will not be speaking, are as follows: Our executive director from NACDA, Mr. Mike Cleary; our first-vice president will be introducing our guest speaker. Next to him, our second vice president from the University of Missouri, Jack Lengyel; our third vice president from West Virginia University, Fred Schaus. The gentlemen next to him and who will be speaking is the newly appointed director
of the NIT and the sponsor of today's luncheon, Jack Powers. Thank you for the luncheon, Jack. The recipient of the NIT award I will not introduce at this time. Our speaker today, I'll leave to Gary Cunningham.
Sitting immediately to my left is the recipient of our Corbett Award and will be left to later as will the commissioner of the Pac-lO. Our vice president of the Marriott Corporation and co-sponsor of Sunday's reception, Mr. Sam Huff; the general manager of Marriott's Marco Island Resort and co-sponsor, again of
our Sunday reception, Pete Hubschmitt. Our director of national contracts and co-sponsor of yesterday's luncheon, Bob Vecchione. Our account executive of Athletic Business publication and sponsor of last
night's reception party, Pete Zugg; our regional vice president of White Way Sign Company and co-sponsor for tonight's cocktails, Mr. Jim Wood. You heard from the next gentleman at the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Breakfast, Randy St. Clair; and our secretary of NACDA from the Community College of Rhode Island, Vin Cullen.
At this time, I would like to have Mr. Gary Cunningham, our athletic director from Fresno State University introduce our speaker.
Thank you, Carl. We're pleased to have Gayle Gardner today as our speaker. She earned her bachelor's degree from Brooklyn College and majored in English and theatre. She then went to Boston University where she earned her master's degree in broadcasting and film. NBC affiliate, WBZ-TV in Boston, was her first
assignment in 1976. There she covered the New England Patriots, the Boston Celtics, Bruins and the Red Sox. In 1978 she joined NBC affiliate WDIV in Detroit. There she covered the Tigers, the Red Wings, Pistons and
the Lions until 1980, when she accepted a position at WJZ in Baltimore. Gayle remained at WJZ until 1983 when she was hired by ESPN as a reporter and anchor for the Sports Center Show. She recently accepted a position, joining NBC in New York as a reporter. Gayle is a knowledgeable and respected sportscaster and I am very pleased to introduce her as our speaker today. I present to you, Gayle Gardner.
Thank you very much, Gary. Yesterday, you were all thinking that Chris is much taller than he looks on television and today, you are all thinking, she's much shorter than she looks on television. First of all, I would like to congratulate both Mike and Bob on their honors today. It's always impressive to be honored, but to be honored by your peers is more impressive because they understand what it is that you really do.
I was trying to think of how I might compare athletic directors to anyone in television. Is there a comparable sort of role? The only thing I could think of was, perhaps, the executive producer at the network. This is the person who sits in the office and during the day people come in. The coordinator of the football operation will enter and say why football is so important, why we need so much more money to do the job. The baseball person comes in with the same story. Then the poor little person comes in who puts the other program on and can't really understand why the same sort of money and personnel is not given to what they do, because
it certainly is just as important to them. The executive producer is very much like the athletic director. You have to juggle and make all kinds of people happy.
Usually, when I speak, I'm often called upon by women's groups and people who are trying to get women more involved in what they do. I would like to tell you that to get to where I am today was a horrible and long story. It is still difficult for women to get into sportscasting. I really don't think this is the
time or place to get into that. The one attitude that still exists is this; think about your own local city and you were to hear that there was a new sportscaster that was hired by one of the local stations. You may turn on your set to see what this person is like. If it were a man who was hired, you'd probably assume that this person knew sports because why would a television station hire a guy who doesn't know anything about sports? You would presume that there is knowledge there. You would only make judgment whether you care for this person or not. In a woman's case, if she were presented as this new person to you, you would probably
sit there and say, "all right, show me what you know." Knowledge is not presumed. You really presume that a woman knows nothing until she can show you otherwise. In the case of a man, you presume knowledge is there until he shows you otherwise. That is the attitude that prevails in sports television.
In a communications business, there is often very little communication. I would like to bring up one thing that has to deal with being a woman. It is one of the questions I'm asked most often. There is a great desire to know how the locker rooms situations fit into what you do. I've had some interesting experiences in dealing with this over the years, and some embarrassing moments too. On a professional level and on a college level, when you're dealing with a major championship like the NCAA basketball tournament, it's just not an
It is an issue in local television. People can afford to get away with things that they couldn't get away with at something like the World Series or at the Super Bowl when it involves women. Why do you need to go near a locker room? I would be the person sent out, for instance when I was in Boston, to do an interview. Now, if I couldn't get the interviews and get them back in time for the six o'clock news, I couldn't do my
job. So, I would be fired. If I was not allowed access to the athletes the way the two male sportscasters
at the other stations were, then I couldn't do my job. If you feel a woman shouldn't be there at all, that's a whole other story. But, if you believe in equal opportunity and that perhaps there are women out there who are capable of doing their job, then you have to realize that you need to give them the opportunity to do the job. That meant allowing women in the locker rooms.
When I first started in 1976, I was sent out to cover the Patriots. There was myself and another woman. The two of us would be sitting waiting for our chance to interview. They put us in the weight room, which became for us the wait room. We would sit there and wait. Hopefully, the public relations director could convince some of these athletes to come out and talk to us. I have to admit that the athletes and coaches are usually pretty good. They would come out, but it would be 45 minutes later or an hour later. The public relations director hated us and didn't want to deal with us. One week we returned to find that the cheer leaders had to change in the weight room after the game. There was no place for us to do the interview. We complained and finally, the Patriots realized they had to deal with us. So, they did. But, it was hard and
it was unfair.
Today, going into the locker rooms in not a problem for women. We now have women who are photographers, sound people, etc., and people realize that the technical crews are going to get in. This makes it easier for
the reporters and writers.
In a business where emphasis is on communication, there often isn't very much communication, or the communication is incorrect. My next story is, "Dave Winfield is dead" story. It took place in Baltimore. I was sitting on the set waiting to do the sportscast. Normally, a sportscaster will go out and do a live
shot from the ball field. This time, we had other things to do, so I was back in the studio. They were going to get Dave Winfield and me on microphones. Five minutes before the sportscast, someone said in my ear, "something's wrong at Memorial Stadium with Dave Winfield." We had a young man on the assignment desk and was not experienced. He came running into the studio and said, "I don't know what's going on, but Dave Winfield is dead." Something happened at the ball park and someone said Dave is dead. I asked the producer, "what do you want me to do?" They always answer, "just talk." I came on the air and assumed this wasn't true. In the middle of the sportscast, someone came on and told me it wasn't true. In television jargon, when you change the script, you say, "kill this" or "so and so is dead." The crew at the ball park had told this new kid that Dave Winfield is dead. They meant we can't get him, and he took it literally.
We were in Australia doing the America's Cup. We were out doing interviews on the street with an Australian crew. A little older women was watching us and came up with her small grandchild and asked us to explain to her grandchild what we were doing. One of our crew started to explain about the America's Cup and he asked the little boy who he was routing for. The grandmother looked at her grandson and said, "we have to leave now." She pulled the little boy and ran off. Behind me, I can hear the Australian crew laughing their heads off. We found out that in Australia, the word rooting means something you do in the privacy of your bedroom. There are many, many stories like that. I can't go into all of them right now.
I do want to say that we need to encourage all the people, like you, who have devoted your lives to sports. Cable has opened a lot of doors for you enabling you to play games on television. If you seriously want something covered, you have to do the thinking for the television executives and come up with ways to
interest them in your package. It was clear to me that no one would open any doors for me. No one was going to welcome me with open arms. It doesn't happen. You have to make people realize why you are valuable to them.
Thank you all for asking me to be here today.
Thank you, Gayle, for taking time out of your busy schedule to be with us today. We appreciate it. I would now like to have Jack Powers, the executive director of the NIT, come up and present the 1988 recipient of the NIT-NACDA Award.
Thank you, Carl. Ladies and gentlemen, it certainly is an honor for me to present the 1988 NIT-NACDA Award. I realize that Pete Carlesimo would have been pleased to present this award to Bob, but, as you may know, Pete has announced his retirement from the NIT as the executive director, effective July I. They have asked me to fill in today and fill in for Pete. Pete has not passed any of his jokes on to me yet.
I would like to mention of few of Bob's involvements in the field of athletics. He had been the director of athletics at Tennessee from 1963 until 1985. During that time, he served on NACDA's first Executive Committee. He was an outstanding football player and I understand that he was a tackle. He
received his engineering degree in 1939. He served in the U.S. Army from 1942 to 1946, where Bob received the rank of Major. Bob was on the coaching staff at Tennessee, West Point and Georgia Tech. He was the head coach at Baylor University and at the University of Florida. He returned to Tennessee and coached for two seasons before becoming the AD for 22-years.
Some of Bob's accomplishments during his tenure at Tennessee were; In 1967 and 1969, the Vols won the SEC championship in football, in 1972, the cross-country team won the NCAA championship, in 1974, the track
and field team won an NCAA championship, and in 1978, the swimming team won an NCAA championship. In the last four years of his tenure, they've been in bowl games at Tennessee.
Bob is a member of the Tennessee Hall of Fame, the State of Georgia Hall of Fame, and the University of Florida's Hall of Fame. Now I'd like to present the seventh annual NIT-NACDA Athletic Administration Award in appreclation for the many years of encouragement and support for the NIT to Bob Woodruff.
Thank you Jack, Mr. chairman and members of the dais, Executive Comm1ttee, ladies and gentlemen. I ret1red a couple of years ago. My second wife, Trudy, is here with me today. We both lost our spouses in the late 70s and we were married in 1980. Between the two of us, our families have 11 children and seven grandch11dren, so we're not completely ret1red, just tired, I think. Having been a head coach and athlet1c d1rector, Trudy says I coach her every morning and d1rect her every afternoon.
When you retire everyone asks how you like retirement. The first thing I say is, "you can't really tell when the weekend starts and a lot of time you can't tell when it ends." I have a farm in Tennessee on former Cherokee Indians' land and I can testify to all my colleagues out here that don't play golf or don't fish or don't go arrowhead hunting, that after retirement you try ba111ng hay, bu11ding fences, raising cattle or planting soy beans. In fact the Bible says, "those that t111 the soil shall labor." It doesn't say you make one penny.
I want to point out that working on a farm, even though it's for a short period of t1me, you'll find the answer to that great philosopher Satchel Page's question, "how old would you be if you don't know how old you are?"
I want to thank the NIT for this great honor. I especially want to thank Peter Carlesimo and his wife Lucy, for all of the wonderful times we've had together over the years. I know we all deeply appreciate the many leaders of intercollegiate athletics who have served the NIT for the past 50 years. It was started in New York in 1938. I could go on a long time. I did learn something today. I know what to say in Australia. Yesterday, I bet Frank Broyles a steak dinner that my response would be shorter than Don Canham's, so I'd better quit. I want to thank you again and God bless everybody.
Congratulations Bob. Now I'd like to introduce our friend, the commissioner of the Pac-lO Conference, Tom Hansen, to introduce our Corbett Award winner.
Ladies and gentlemen, honorees and Gayle, thank you for your sage words about television. I can attest from a lesser role than yours that they are right on target. Bob Woodruff, I remember some wonderful times at the University of Tennessee and your tremendous hospitality there. Congratulations to you.
At yesterday's luncheon Don Canham said that being elected to the Hall of Fame is like being elected captain of a team. Well, now we're going to turn our attention to recognizing our MVP for the day. You should know that Mike Lude and I have a very sensitive relationship. On one hand, I'm an alumnus of the University of Washington, so I have that special privilege as all of your alumns do of providing that extra bit of special advice to the athletic director that he needs so desperately in his job. On the other hand, Mike Lude is the chair of the Pac-1O Budget and Finance Committee which completes its work in two weeks. So today, my salary is riding on every word.
It's an honor for me to present this award, which is one of the most prestigious that any of us know of, to a man who is more qualified than any other that I know of today. He's a good friend of mine. He's a good friend to many of you. He's a great friend of intercollegiate athletics. I know of no finer professional in this most demanding of jobs that you all perform, a job that I think is the most difficult of any that I know of. Mike possesses all of the qualities necessary for an athletic director to succeed.
His many achievements are reflected in your programs, so I can concentrate on Mike as a wonderful human being. It's fitting that he is receiving this award because the last time that NACDA met here in Marco Island, Mike made a very eloquent presentation of the award to another very special person, Carl Maddox. As you will note in your program, there's been some wonderful human beings who have received this award; Asa Bushnell, Fritz Crisler, Ernie McCoy, last year John Toner, and three people who have touched my life in a very great and special way, Tom Hamilton, Wiles Hallock and Walter Eyers. That's why the award is so coveted and I believe very strongly Mike Lude belongs right square in that company.
It is also fitting that Mike is going to be more closely associated with Jim Corbett. Jim, who was so instrumental in the founding of NACDA, was a talented, bright, outgoing person who loved life and made friends easily. So is Mike Lude. Jim Corbett was extremely enthusiastic and enthusiasm is Mike Lude's greatest
quality. I've had the pleasure of working closely with Mike during the five years I've been commissioner of the Pac-1O and prior to that, because of his many contributions to the NCAA. He always greets new ideas, new challenges, new friends with enthusiasm. I've watched to see that as he became more successful and more of a distinguished elder statesman for college athletics, if that enthusiasm would wane, and it hasn't at all. It never has. He's without fatigue. He's without the knowledge of the word quit and he just loves what he does.
I think the number of staff members from the University of Washington who have traveled
here proves what kind of man he is. I would like his staff to all stand up so everyone can see how many of them came to honor him today.
I'd also like to read a telegram which I received today: "We join this country's intercollegiate athletic community in celebrating the Corbett Award presentation to our own Mike Lude. Mike, you have brought honor to yourself, your family, your profession and your university. We know that this distinguished award honors not a single achievement, but years of hard work in and dedicated service to college athletics. It is richly deserved and we salute you. With warmest regards on this special occasion, William P. Gerberding, President of the University of Washington and Jim Collier, Vice President."
Mike was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Athletics provided him with the opportunity to attend Hillsdale College. There he demonstrated his leadership ability by being elected captain of both the football and baseball teams. He then was a football coach sought nationwide for his expertise on offense before he entered athletic administration. Success has been plentiful here also. As Mike begins his 13th year, the Washington football team has been to nine straight bowl games. It has had its men's and women's basketball teams in the NCAA tournament recently and he has consistently expanded the athletic facilities. It was in this area that Mike had a very unique opportunity recently. He is one of the few ADs that I know who ever saw the upper deck of his football stadium come down to the ground before his eyes.
Mike was NACDA's president in 1981-1982 and no person has given more loyal or dedicated service to our organization. As Gayle said a minute ago, there can be no finer honor than to be recognized by your peers; those with whom you most frequently associate and with whom you occasionally must do battle. No individual has more clearly earned our respect or is more worthy of our honor than Mike Lude. Therefore, I'm delighted to present to him the 1988 James J. Corbett Award on behalf of his friends and colleagues in NACDA.
President Carl, members of the Executive Committee and all of you people out there, thank you. I guess right now I can say, "wowl" I'm thinking right now about Don Canham who gave me some great advice. He said, "Lude, damn it, be short." I'm going to try to be short, but I've got some road to cover here. I won't keep you more than six minutes and 45-seconds.
I want to share this wonderful experience today with some very special people who are right here in front of me. First of all, my teammate for more than a couple of years, Rena Lude. Secondly, a good opportunity can't go by without your three kids. Our three daughters are here, Cynthia, Jeanann and Jill. Rena, I want to know when I get home tonight who you're going to be rooting for because I think I'm going to be cheering. You've already met Don Smith, Kit Green, Mike Alderson, Pete Liska, Dee Glueck and Kyle Kallander, part of the team, and I think it's a great team.
I love college athletics. I really love college athletics. There are many reasons why. You see, Iowe whatever I have accomplished since the eighth grade to that fantastic world of athletics. I owe it to itt
Now Bob talked about farming, but he didn't talk about farming the way I'm going to tell you about farming.
How else could a farm boy, a boy who helped his father work 220 acres of hills and stones on a shared basis, be here in this situation today? How else could that happen? I'm a product of a country school with eight grades, one teacher and one room. No plumbing and all of the other things it was not.
Secondly, a town of 2,000 people, nine-miles from that farm, with 200-students in the high school. I'm a graduate of a small liberal arts college. I received my master's degree from a university who now claims very proudly, that they are the 1988 Rose Bowl champions. I am a product who received such great help from a high school coach. Without him I could never be here. College coaches. I worked for Dave Nelson, a man I admired a lot for 14-years at Hillsdale College, the University of Maine, and the University of Delaware
and I learned a lot from him. I was a product of a loyal and very special group of students-athletes. And extremely knowledgeable, intelligent and dedicated colleagues and friends who are such great people in this profession. It is truly appropriate to say, "it is people who really make the difference. And, those people are right here in this room. You. You are the people."
I've learned so much and I'm still learning from so many of you. Without this professional
organization, NACDA, this learning process would not have been possible. This is a great time for me and I'm glad that I had the opportunity to experience it while I'm still trying to fight a few battles. This is a great time for met And, it's a great time for me to remind myself and you of four particular ideas; one, don't forget your friends; two, give and require loyalty; three, that WORK is not a dirty four-letter word; and, four, put back into the system, the profession, everything you can without egos getting in the way.
That's why NACDA is so important. It gives us an opportunity, a profession; a very, very strong professional organization and the only one there is for athletic directors.
I'm so fortunate and lucky and privileged, you know it! Without intercollegiate athletics, there would not have been in Mike Lude's life a college education, a Rena, a Cynthia, Jeanann or Jill. NACDA is a great profession and an association with all of you, the greatest people in the world. I love intercollegiate athletics! If I had that sign with that big heart on it, I'd have it right across my chest.
I have little patience with those who always expound on what is wrong with intercollegiate athletics and then doing nothing about the situation. I prefer to use the phrase, "what is right with intercollegiate athletics?" Let me quickly say, I see just a few things, but they're not limited to this, what is right? First of all, you. You. Secondly, women in athletics; third, opportunities for all minorities, black, white, brown, red, yellow --whomever and whatever. The NCAA, the NAIA, the National Junior and Community College Association, the CFA, conferences, independents, NACDA, student-athletes, the values we learn and teach. Sure, we have some problems. I heard Dick Schultz talk about it and I've heard a lot of us talk about it and we
have opportunities to do something in meeting these challenges. The past and what it's represented has been tremendous. The present is very, very interesting. But, the future, the future is really fantastic. I love athletics.
Of course, we need to solve some immediate problems. From time to time we have temporary set-backs. But you know what? That's not all bad. I look enthusiastically forward to the future of this great profession, the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and higher education with a positive, hopeful expectancy. I ask myself and all of you to work together to put something of value
back into a great area of education where we can and are doing so much for countless others. There is no place, I guarantee you this, where we teach, develop, demonstrate the team principal any greater than intercollegiate athletics. There's not a class on our campus that teaches it, but athletics does.
I'm so grateful, pleased, thankful and appreciative to be the recipient of the James J. Corbett Award. I'm looking forward to the future by reminding myself from where I came, 220 acres of stones and hills and how I got there. As Dave Nelson, said, "don't forget what got you where you are." Put something of value back into the system everyday. Yes, what really makes the difference is people, you. Thank you to the members
of NACDA, the Executive Committee, the executive director, Mike Cleary and to all of you. I'm very proud to be your 1988 James J. Corbett Award recipient and I'll try to live up to the dignity and high standards symbolic of this recognition. Thank you very much.
Mike, my watch said you were four seconds off on your timing, so consequently, Josten's Company has offered the Corbett Award watch that will really keep you on time. With that, we stand adjourned.