ALL NACDA MEMBERS
THE ATHLETICS DIRECTOR AS A LEADER: THE POSITIVE IMPACT OF OUR PROFESSION
(Tuesday, June 8 -8:00-9:15 a.m.)
I'd like to welcome everyone this morning. My name is Bill Byrne. I'm the director of athletics at the University of Nebraska. We want to set a few of the ground rules. One of the reasons we're having this discussion this morning is because as we chat amongst ourselves, we talk about all of the problems we have in college athletics. What we want to talk about today, and have these panelists talk to you about is some of the good things we do in college athletics. Some of the things we take pride in. We always have problems. I was struck yesterday with some of the comments that Keith Jackson made and at the same time, some of the comments Tom Butters made, because they both made the point that even though we do have problems, they're probably no more insurmountable than we've had in the past. If we don't think what we do is important, all we have to do is ask a 10-year-old kid, because he or she will tell us how important the things that we do are.
We're going to the panelists to talk for a little while. Then, we're going to ask for some feedback from you. I'll ask you to go the microphone, identify yourself, pretend this is the NCAA Convention and let's have some dialogue. Let's begin.
It's my pleasure to introduce one of my oldest friends, the chancellor of Louisiana State University, Dr. William E. "Bud" Davis.
Thank you, Bill. When Bill Byrne says "old friend", he means really old! In 1965, I was appointed president of Idaho State University .They introduced me to the president of the student body and it was, yours truly, up here. At that time, he had a horrible scar over his left eye and I wondered if it were something permanent or would it get well. I asked him about it and I found out that he'd been putting toilet water on his hair and the lid fell down. He has since recovered.
People ask what makes you feel good about intercollegiate athletics. This is a week when I've felt really good. One, I feel good that they play eight innings in the College World Series instead of seven, because it takes that long for the Tigers to wake up. The other thrill was that after attending the Southeast Conference meeting of presidents, athletic directors and coaches, and the CF A meeting in Dallas, I flew home on Saturday night and watched the NCAA championships. It was a thrilling evening. It was one of those balmy nights. Everyone was sweating. I was sitting with a good friend from Tennessee, Joan Cronan and her husband. As we were sitting there, there was a particular moment that became etched in your memory .It was right after the men had finished the 1500-meters and the women relay teams were coming on the field. They were all running to they're places. I looked out and there was a kaleidoscope of people running around with all different school colors. The place was exploding with activity and it sent chills up and down my spine. Joan Cronan, a very beautiful and elegant lady, was sitting next to me and I turned to her and said, " In 1980-81, before the women participated in the NCAA championship, could you imagine something like this happening? She said, "No." Then she said two things that really stuck with me. "I think what would I have given as a young lady in college to have the chance to participate in an event like this?" She then said, "How lucky I have been to be a part of this great change, transition that has taken place in intercollegiate athletics over these past few years. " It made me think myself how lucky I was to have had the chance to participate a long time ago.
In the 1940s, I was an undergraduate at the University of Colorado and I had a chance to participate in football. I only weighed 145 pounds as an undergraduate, I was little, but I was slow. I was a walk-on and I played four years and I never forgave the coach for having an all-America under his nose and never discovering him. I thought that I not only walked on to play football at that school, I walked on to one of the
great fraternities of men and women, not only in the United States, but in the world, and it opened up new dimensions for my educational experience. It provided me the opportunity to meet people like yourselves and all of the athletes who participate. There's a bond that pulls us together and it makes me proud to be a part of it, in no matter how small or insignificant a way.
I also thought back to that time when all of the world was young. None of us ever thought of growing old and the tremendous differences then and now. It was the time in 1947, Colorado left the old Big Sky Conference and became a part of the Big Six which has expanded since that time to the Big Seven. There was quite a feral because Colorado was invited to participate and the administration said, "yes" and the
athletes and the students said "no." The reason was that the Jim Crow rule still applied and we had black athletes on the team in Colorado. We heard that if we went, the black athletes could playas long as they played in Colorado. But, if we went to Kansas and Oklahoma and Missouri, they could not participate in the events. The athletic teams said "No way. We don't want to be a part of it." They turned it down. There
was a huge turmoil on campus. That was before the time of protests and people didn't do that kind of thing. But, it stuck. Soon, the league amended it's rules. When we were admitted, the black athletes were permitted to play and they could stay in the same hotel and eat in the same places as we did. That's 50 years ago. It's a different time and a different place.
I remember being very thrilled getting out of the U.S. Marine Corp and going to the Colorado- Oklahoma football game. Seeing that single black face, I saw so much courage and what a change. Pretty soon, there was a flood of these athletes. In 1961, Colorado went to the Orange Bowl. They played, of all places now that I'm there, Louisiana State University. LSU had won the Southeast Conference in baseball but had declined to participate in the NCAA championship tournament because it would have to play and compete against black athletes and the state legislature prohibited that. They had to get special dispensation for LSU, an all White team, to participate against Colorado in the Orange Bowl of 1961. That was the first time that students in that all white institution played against black athletes.
Two years ago Carl Raspberry, the columnist, was the guest speaker on our campus for Martin Luther King Day. At that time, we had a parade and the student body president was a black student. The Homecoming queen that year was a black student. Here were these students integrated on our campuses, particularly on our athletic team. Black and white students marched arm-in-arm in that parade and I was marching arm-in-arm with Carl Raspberry and he looked at me and said, "If 20 years ago anyone had told me that I would be walking through the LSU campus arm-in-arm with black and white students singing, "We Shall Overcome", in commemoration of Martin Luther King, I'd have said they were crazy." I looked at this whole transition and I think that athletics, more than any other single factor, as an observer, athletics have clearly done more to integrate our campuses than any other single factor. It has brought the minority students on a basis in which they could participate and succeed and stand out. I see that good feeling. It could almost serve as a motto. It's not perfect yet, but how far it has come.
I feel the same about gender equity. We still have a long way to go and we have problems, yet I see how much has happened in just the last 10 years. It's been an explosion and the chances for women are there.
I would like to discuss one more thing that makes me proud to be associated with athletics. That is what they have done with academic respectability .I am not among the educators who think that the bottom line in education is the graduation rate. We have been around long enough to know that if interest requirements are high enough and if you let in no one into your institution except those who have 1300 on the College Board or 27 or 28 on the ACT, your predictability of graduation rate goes way up. But, if you're dealing with kids from marginal families, from inner cities, from rural schools, who don't have those advantages, you can't always measure their potential by what they score on an ACT or a College Board test at the age of 16 or 17. Some educators haven't been in the high scoring area. Some people haven't witnessed these impoverished students and what athletics has done. Athletics has given some of these people a chance to change their lives. Not all of them succeed. Athletics doesn't bat a thousand and academics doesn't bat a thousand either.
I would submit that while graduation is a goal to which we aspire and try to motivate our students to
achieve in four years, there are a lot of educated people who don't have degrees and whose lives have been changed and made richer and better because of that experience in being on a campus. I hope that in good common sense, we don't go overboard in restricting the opportunities for people and use academic preparation and background as another means of discrimination and move backwards instead of forward in the years to come. This a job and a challenge that reaches out to us as educators as well as people who are interested in athletics.
Again, over the experience of many years as an athlete, as a coach and as an educator and teacher and I'm proud of all of those relationships, I know there have been failures. There are timeS when I've been disappointed in individuals. There are times when I've been disappointed in coaches. I know, while we have some great people, we also have some scoundrels. But overwhelmingly, the impact on lives of people, I see victory after victory after victory as these young people come to our campuses and learn and change to become productive citizens. You represent a noble profession and you give us, time after time, and victory after victory .Just stand and be proud and cheer loudly and we thank you.
Now you have some idea of why he has more tenure as a college president than anyone in the United States. Now it's my pleasure to introduce a man you're going to hear a great deal about this afternoon because he's our award winner, Dr. LeRoy Walker, president of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Thank you. I don't think it was planned this way, but the president has just utilized all of the remarks that I was going to make. I would like to emphasize several of the points that he just made and then move over to that part of this discussion when we talk about what should be the impact of the future.
I came in the time when he was alluding to the facts of 50 years ago and what athletics was like. I just finished a two-day session to try to find out what to do with these football needs that have occurred, because in those days, our trainer had a little box with some mercurochrome and two rolls of tape. If you came out limping, he simply took the tape out and tightened it so you could go back in. Well, I have been the beneficiary of all of the things that the president talked about as an athlete, as a coach, as a chancellor and for a young black that was reared in Harlem that never thought would ever go below South Perry, it has been rewarding for me to think about the things that the president mentioned in terms of what athletics has done.
I grew up in athletics at the time that we talked about it as the laurel wreath concept. The athlete was the real focus of the program. All we needed was that laurel wreath as the quintessence any compensation that we should expect in terms of making all-America. It was important, and yet, as things have progressed and we recall the statement of what some say about the commercialism, about not doing all of the things in education that we should for the athlete. That's not new. President Elliott made that statement 100 years ago, when he was the president of Harvard. It's a natural move over to the market place concept. The important thing about athletics in this illustrious group here is that we are finding ways to balance the swing of that pendulum of the laurel wreath over to the marketplace. As I recall the kinds of things that happened to me with the great coaches that I had and the emulation of things that I saw from athletes ahead of me, was that I learned the value of time, the value of perseverance and the worth of character that was so important then, as they are important now. The life skills that were important to come out of this program of athletics that we were in, as I look back, is the reason why I'm standing here. The things that have occurred that made it possible for me to do tasks well and try to put into implementation what my mother kept saying to me as one of 13 children, and the only one who could go to college because of an athletic scholarship to achieve this, is to keep doing things well. Remember the teachable moments that come from what you're doing in athletics and you'll get somewhere as long as you don't dwell on the fact that you should expect a lot of entitlement. My mother reminded me that there are two ways to get to the top of an oak tree. You can be aggressive and creative and you can work at it and achieve the task well, or you can sit on an acorn and wait. I believed her. When individuals have asked me if it is alright to say that you are he first Afro-American to become the
president of the u.s. Olympic Committee, I answer, "Yes, it's alright to say that." Because in my heart and among my colleagues, having chaired every major committee in the USOC, and having been involved with it for 30 years, going through a lot to become the treasurer, never thinking about the next task, only the task that was before me, which was something I gained from my participation in athletics, go on and say that. If there's a female or an Hispanic or Afro-American that has had any skepticism about what grows out of our sport and sports and what teachable moments have been there to get me to this position, it would tend to reduce that skepticism. They would know that if they hang in there and do things well and achieve the things that those teachable moments in athletics have provided for them, there are enough fair-minded people to choose you as president of the USOC. So, tell them that. It's alright.
When we look at the historical development of institutions and athletes, the president referred to the graduation rate, we think that the movement that has been brought into focus by this illustrious group, and others affiliated by the NCAA, that started the historically black institutions on the path of, not a new road, but continued what it has been doing all the time. The graduation rates of the black athletes from those institutions is higher than the regular student body. That's been rewarding. We still feel a little bit of the laurel wreath concept as we try to move across the swing of the pendulum. But let me say that what has happened to me coming up the ladder from an athlete to a coach to a chairman of a department to a chancellor, I've been thinking what is it going to take to continue this focus that the president mentioned earlier. That hierarchy is absolutely essential. All of us are in this hierarchy. It goes one step beyond the president and the chancellor to the board of trustees. That hierarchy goes straight down, whether you call it top down or bottom up. It's the board of trustees that has to give the president, not only the responsibility, but the authority to be the leader in this great movement. Then, he must function in terms of the mission of the university and what we think of as this combination of student-athlete.
I wonder about that term. I don't hear much reference about student-band or student-choir. What is it about this special human being that's there to gain an education and to learn these life skills that we must make that differentiation? It is, however, there and we have to deal with it because we are so much more exposed than the band or the choir. That hierarchy has to continue on down to the athletic director. The president must give him the responsibility and also the authority. I remember in 1986 when we were
debating Prop 48. I didn't have that much problem with Prop 48 being in a school with minor resources. I worried more about Prop 49 than 48, for those old enough to remember those discussions. When my athletic director came to me when I was the chancellor and said, "What are we going to do when they want to have all the HBCUs exempt from 48?" I can give you a thousand reasons why the SAT is not a good single barometer for admitting anyone into a university .I had a program called the Valedictorian Program. We wanted to search out and find as many valedictorians as we could. One of them, from a very fine high school in
Florida, had only scored 780. So, the recruiter asked what we should do about this. I asked, "how did she become valedictorian?" He named all of the nice courses that this student took. I told him I would forget that I ever heard the 780 because we would like to have her here. She became the first traditional student to finish four years with a 4.0 average. Well, I can give reasons why I don't like the SAT. I believe when you tell me it's culturally biased. I think it's gender biased. I think it's geographically biased. It they had asked me
early on something about the Dow Jones, I thought they were talking about one of my neighbors. So, there are a lot of biases there.
I want to give you 900 points of bias. It's important for us not to send a message to the ninth graders if it can't get the other 700 and make a C. That's a terrible message to send. We've gained from that. As that hierarchy moves down, it goes from the athletic director down to the coach, and from the coach down to the athlete. For the athletes to have the integrity that the coaches taught us early on, which you now must also have the coaches teach athletes integrity .I have serious problems with the athletes that get religion four years after they have finished to talk about something that they did back as a junior that gets the institution in trouble. They knew it was wrong. But why did it take so long to get religion? The integrity that ought to be there is a part of this great movement. It should be taught. Athletic directors, you are leaders. You are that day-by-day future impact to accomplish the things that the president has talked about. And I'm sure that Judy will re-emphasize it again. You are that link because you're hands-on day-by-day. You are the leader that is expected to raise the expectations of all of the athletes on your campus whatever the sport.
It's also important to recognize that that leadership quality that you have and the way you are presenting it and the fact that you know by your deeds and declarations, you can change the focus of the institution because we have gained ground now. The public does have more confidence in us in terms of what we are trying to accomplish and that's good. Part of that public has been alumni and booster clubs, etc., that have figured
that the ways things have been going is the way things ought to do. You now have more credence. Because you know that you're deeds and declarations would make a difference is not a sign of vanity .That's a sign of recognizing the responsibility of how important you are in this hierarchy, whether it goes up and down.
Mr. President, when we think about the athletic director, the guy's got to be a psychologist, a communicator, a financier, a sociologist. I listened to the program yesterday talking about the essence of what the student-athlete is supposed to be and I realized that you are all of those things. Because you are all of those things in this very complex issue, it has to be so that you will accept the role and athletes like myself that came up in that era and know how important this is, will continue to bask in it because of what it can do for the future.
Let me close with a little something I read which I think is important. "In this enduring battle that goes on in our sports and in life, we ask for a playing field that's fair and the courage to strive and to dare. And ii we should win, let it be by the code with our faith and our honor held high. If we should lose, let us stand at the bench and cheer as the winners go by. " If we redefine success as a journey and not a destination and we accept the role that you play in terms of making this great industry of ours acceptable to the world and appreciated by all of those we touch, we are in for a great session in the 90's and beyond. Thank you for the opportunity to talk about this.
Thank you, Dr. Walker. We appreciate your remarks. Now, it's my pleasure to introduce my friend, Judie Holland from the University of Califomia-Los Angeles. Judie and I were colleagues, until recently, in the Pacific 10 Conference. I always admired her programs and I know she's going to bring you some great comments today.
Thank you, Bill. I feel very privileged to follow these two men. I've known them both for quite some time. LeRoy and I are compatriots from a long time ago. Some of the remarks I have today will tie up what these two gentlemen have said and what they stand for. As I thought about what I was going to say today, the topic was the athletic director as a leader, I wanted to draw on my experiences and on the people I have known and on the leaders that I have worked with over the years and try to present a few of the ideas I think go into this kind of idea.
First of all, the athletic director as a leader, to me is an idea that is long overdue. We've thought of athletic directors for years as managers, people who simply came in and managed a program. They directed that program but, did they lead? I think they have led for many years and haven't gotten enough recognition for it.
These are some of the things that I think a leader has. I've known a lot of athletic directors that have had these qualities. The first, is vision. LeRoy talked a little about vision and I think he might remember a discussion we had many years ago when we were both much younger. I was president of AlA W .LeRoy was just coming in as President of HPER. We had a disagreement. I had a vision for AlA W that differed from a lot of people in the field. We discussed that vision and we worked something out that really worked very well for everyone. Because LeRoy, although he didn't share my vision, had another vision. We shared those visions and we made some things work that have helped women's athletics over the years. Athletic directors have to have a vision for your program. You have to know your purpose and the purpose is not just to win. There are other things that you do as you do your business.
I suggest a lot of things today that a lot of people are going to walk out of the room and say that I don't know what I'm talking about. I've been on a lot of committees. I've been on a lot of panels. I've been on all kinds of things where I believe that you need a mission statement. The people will tell me you don't, or that it's just words on a piece of paper. But any true leader knows that you have to know what your mission is and you have to be able to put it into words. If you can't do that, you can't get anyone to follow you. You don't really know where you're going either. So, you need that mission statement. That mission statement comes out of your vision. It says to you what you're all about and where you're headed. Something else about a mission statement is that it helps you make decisions. It's what you can make decisions around. There's a story about two men that were out chopping granite. A fellow walks by and says to the first guy, "What are you doing?" He answered, "I'm chopping rocks. What does it look like?" He said to the other guy, "What are you doing?" He said, "I'm part of a team. We're building a great cathedral." One man had vision. The other did not.
When you get that mission statement, you develop what I call a strategic plan. This helps you to achieve your vision. It's something concrete. It's something again, that your followers, your people, your staff, have something to grab a hold of. They now understand. It becomes your guidelines for your decisions.
Another thing that I feel a leader has and I'm now talking about the athletic director, is that you have an attitude that is centered towards results. That means you want to accomplish your goals, whether they are the goals for this month, the goals for this quarter, for this year, the goals for our tenure plan. But, you want to accomplish those goals. In order to do that, you set up systems that help you do that and help your staff do that. Without this attitude, your mission is nothing more than a hollow statement because all of these things tie in together.
Another thing that I don't think we think about in athletic directors is that they are innovators. We're not just plodders, people going through the day doing what someone else tells you to do. You're future oriented, for one thing. The nice thing about this business is what do we always say, "There's always next year." It's one of the nice things I like about being in athletics. An athletic director is always going to challenge the status quo. Just don't accept things the way they are. You're always challenging the world out there. But that challenge is always tied to your vision of the future. We don't always think of ourselves as creative, and yet, I think we are. We have to have a commitment to continuous improvement, always going forward. In doing so, you're always open to new suggestions, new ways of operating, willing to express yourself and expose yourself to a large flow of ideas. There's nothing that substitutes for reading. How much time do you have when you're on a plane or driving a car where everything is on tape, so you can always learn and you're always taking in new ideas no matter how old you are or how long you've been in the business.
Another quality I've seen a lot of lately is courage. It means you stick to what you believe. You're able to make the hard interventions, the things that really make a difference to people. The other thing you do is expose yourself to being wrong. It's always a tough thing to do, but then you're able to admit when you're wrong.
I put these four things out that I really believe should be in a leader. One- you're able to make hard decisions, two --you have, what I call, courageous patience. You're willing to stand in there when things aren't going your way. You're willing to stay the course. Three --you're able to deal with conflict and deal with it straightforwardly. And, four --as I just said, you have the courage to admit you were wrong.
The next quality is something that I've worked very hard in my career to achieve and I can tell you that both LeRoy and Bud have done the same. That's integrity. That's about being honest. Always moving forward, but yqu're honest in that moving. You follow through in that commitment. This is very important for your staff. You say you stand for something. Then, you follow through on that. Everything you set up is geared towards what you believe in. In other words, you have congruency in your life. Every decision I ever made, I try to think of it as if it was going to be published on the front page of the Los Angeles Times, would I be willing to read it there. If I would be, then that's the decision I'm going to make. If it's something I wouldn't be to proud of, then that's not the decision I want to make. I think John Wooden said it best,
"There's no pillow as soft as a clear conscience."
Good leaders then, have consistency with their vision, their attitude, their integrity, all of that with their management practices. It means you are what you say you are. Your values and your practices are aligned. They're equal. They go together. Value is something that you stand for and we can always talk about values, but one of the good tests of value is if someone says to you, if you value that, are there any exceptions to that? Would you ever change? Is there something you wouldn't do as a result of that? A value is something that is immovable. You will not change from it, nor would you do anything that would alter that value.
While we say we have values, there are very few that are immovable, so you really have to decide which four, five or six are really that strong in your mind.
Another thing I feel is important for a leader is thoughtfulness. To me, thoughtfulness is a prerequisite to effectiveness. It's not ready, fire, aim, but, ready, aim, fire. A leader anticipates crises. The other people in your organization don't have to do that. The leader does. He must always anticipate what can happen and be ready for anything that can happen.
In summary, I think these three things are important. You learn from the past. You plan for the future and you manage the present, but you don't want to get stuck on anyone of those things. You have to balance them. You have to do them all together. Leaders do the right thing. Managers do things right. You have to decide which one you are. Thank you very much.
Thank you very much, Judie. Now, we have the opportunity for some dialogue. We would like to have you come to the microphones, just as at the NCAA, and ask a few questions or share a few things and talk about this wonderful profession that we're all an integral part of. I'd like to have you now step to the microphone. I anticipated that no one would step up right now, so let me ask the first question. I'd like the panelist to address a leader that they have worked with and what they think is perhaps the single most important attribute they have learned from them and the modeling they've received. Dr. Davis, let's start wi1 you.
I have been very inspired by the young leaders in our profession and in our country .I'm not one of the cynics. I don't harken back to the good old days because the good old days were not that. They were bigoted. They were prejudiced and they were inflexible. Things have changed. We are looking to a new era of leaders in athletics and in education so, it's the Bill Byrnes and all of you who have entered the profession lately and face the great tasks that are ahead of us. I would hope that you would have the humility to know that we're not where we ought to be yet.
The drive to aspire to move further. I hope you have the power to provide the effective leadership that leads us forward and not backwards as we address three or four very critical issues that confront us today. We shouldn't freeze out and disenfranchise those who need the educational and athletic opportunities the mc The people I admire and respect are those of you who have had the courage to step into the arena, to accept the challenges and leadership. You 're in a position to provide leadership that, hopefully, will continue this momentum over the next 50 years. Thank you.
I think the coaches that I played under were the ones who really shaped the philosophy that I've held the years with regard to what great benefits come from participation in athletics. My basketball coach w~ linguist. He spoke four languages and got me involved and concerned about languages. We used to tell
to each other in French that the rest of the class didn't understand.
It was something that you learn from that process. My football coach was the type of person that Judie described. If you want to know why I was concerned in Barcelona about taking on whomever it was that thought that we should not have a fair process, that we should disenfranchise any group of athletes that should have the right to participate in Olympic sports. It was simply because I remember what my coach used to tell me about staying in there and this value system that Judie referred to. It's all the constellations of individuals because playing three sports, any bad apples would have delayed making my fabric. But, because all of the coaches that I had, came to me the same way. It was such a reinforcement that I think it helped to mold that philosophy later on in my own coaching. I had two practices a day. Both practices were important, I thought, in molding the students. It was that core that I can refer to in terms of impact on me which is why I developed a certain philosophy in my own coaching.
I think I said all I wanted to say, but I'll add this one thing. I'm going to name a person that I feel is one of the greatest leaders I've ever worked with and that's Chancellor Young. The reason I say that is because he was always so open to new ideas. He always sought, and still does, the staff out for their suggestions, recommendations and ideas. He had a vision for UCLA that he has put into practice over the years. Everything at the university emanates from that vision. You get into sharing that vision and it makes you a better person. That's what a leader is all about. Everybody under that person is better because they've worked with that person.
Are there any comments or questions from the audience? Jim Copeland.
Jim Copeland :
Jim Copeland from the University of Virginia. I'm a voting delegate if you need credentials. Judie, I was interested in what you had to say about vision. My question is, who's vision is the deparbnent's? Who determines that and how is it determined? In your example, Chancellor Young. Was that just his vision and everybody else bought into it? Or, did that come from a consensus of some type?
I'm just going to give you my opinion on this and probably half the room will agree and the other half won't. I don't think that vision is reached by consensus. A true leader has their vision and you're able to move your people towards that vision. Now, that doesn't mean that your vision doesn't get changed a little.
It doesn't mean that there aren't people that help you shape your vision a little bit more, but I don't think you go to your staff and say, let's concoct a vision for our department. That's why the athletic director is the leader. There's vision. If you work for someone where you don't share that person's vision, you don't work for them anymore. You move along to someplace else where you can share the vision. It's really a person's idea of where they really want to go.
I think it's a combination here. I like to use the term when I talk to my staff about synergism. Even though you bring those leadership qualities there and you talk about it as having emerged from your own deeds and decorations, the synergism that's required means, as Judie said, everybody must buy into it and the substructures of that vision may be the kinds of things that the input comes from the rest of the individuals involved. Because, I've always believed that the whole is greater than some of it's parts. For the two years I was in Atlanta putting the program together for '96, we kept saying over and over again, there's no such thing as a partially successful Olympic Games. You can't assume that I'll do my share well in moving towards this vision and if Charlie doesn't do his, I'm going to get credit. It doesn't work that way. The synergism is required for everybody to be on the same page. Different parts of the implementation division is going to
come from individuals doing different things.
I think the leader has to have the good vision to hire people who have good vision. The leader has to see the total program in its perspective. He or she also has to treat an atmosphere where ideas come from many people and are going to get a fair hearing. Be open and sensitive to change. You have to rely on the expertise of the people in the field because no leader of a complex organization is expert enough to have that insight and knowledge. The most important thing is to work with people who have vision and integrity and whom you can trust.
I'm Warner Alford, director of athletics at the University of Mississippi. I'd like to address the subject of funding, which is near and dear to most athletic directors' hearts. How do we balance the budg If you're charged with a budget that you cannot run a deficit, we all want to increase opportunities for student-athletes, both men and women. If we have to increase the opportunities and put additional sports c there that would be non-revenue, the board of trustees or the governing body you have in your state, need address the fact that we're going to have to go to some source within the university to allow these funds tI extended to increase opportunities for student-athletes. Most universities, ours included, have experienced number of budget cut-backs, which makes it very difficult for the chancellor or the president to allocate fi to the department of intercollegiate athletics, because most of the time, they don't want that to happen. y run on the revenues that you produce. You get yourself in a real bind as an athletic director when you're trying to run the department and balance the budget, but also, to increase the opportunities for men and women, adding additional sports. It's kind of a mixed message that we've worked on.
I'm talking to President Davis, mainly. In a league where their eight schools double whose budgets double what mine might be, there's no way that I can offer the number of opportunities that they can offer. It's a tough call.
One, I think the idea that athletics should be self-supporting is nonsense. It's either educational and belongs as a part of our total educational enterprise, or it isn't. I happen to be one to think that athletics on all levels provide a great educational enrichment and expanded opportunities and are deserving of full suppo Some states have done this. You know and I know that an institution of 10,000 or less or 20,00 or more, th addition of 400 students, plus or minus, is not going increase your structural cost one penny. One of the things that all of our state legislature can do is to get on the bandwagon and help support these programs. Authorize the waiver of tuition and fees for these athletes. It wouldn't cost them anything in appropriation and we would not be losing a great amount of revenue and it would be recognizing that this is an integral p~ of the program and is just as legitimate an expenditure as many of the others. LSU is one of maybe 10 or 2 institutions in the country that generates more money than we spend per year in athletics. We don't receive nickel from the state to support our athletic program in any way. I don't think this is good. The state shouJ have a stake in this enterprise and this could provide relief. Private institutions could do the same thing. Many private institutions work with paper transactions and they can say that their athletic scholarship is wor1 $17,000 or $18,000, but really, it's a write-off. If only they would have realized that that money for the athletic scholarship, if that same student had enrolled and paid the full tuition and fees. But, it didn't cost them that to educate that student. I think we do have a crisis. I'm sorry that all of these well-meaning legislatures that get on the bandwagon for women's participation in athletics on both the state and federal level, have been so reluctant to do anything to help support it. It's morally wrong, whether or not you have women's volleyball program, to depend on the receipts you're going to have in football. That is one of the greatest evils in athletics today. It should be an educational investment by our states and our country .
I'm Bobby Risinger from the University of Houston. I'd like to address an issue that I think we all have to deal with from time to time and that is, if you have any particular philosophies or approach to student and faculty and staff negativism on campus about athletics and the role that athletics plays in the school.
One of the things is that so many of our schools and individuals don't recognize that 95 percent of all the things going on in the universities in collegiate athletics are good. Athletics are neither good nor bad. It's the people who make them so. They look at the publicity that some athlete, who just graduated and barely got
out of the class, is now making $3 million a year and they got a one and a half percent raise on a salary that was already below standard. It creates a problem. I used to tell my athletes not to wear their athletic jackets to class. Let them see you as a regular student and we'll take care of your athletic side on the field, because some faculty do have a negative aspect. The more they begin to understand that you are a part of the educational process and if we stop publicizing the millions of dollars that some individual has made, will
make them understand better. They take a lot of that home with them in terms of developing their attitudes. They have to understand that there is a very small percentage that's doing that. I like what Michael Jordan and some of the others do in spite of his golf losses. He sends money back to the institution. Mike Krzyzewski, with his multi-million dollar contract with Nike, gave a couple hundred thousand dollars back to educational scholarships, not athletic scholarships. The more they understand that, the more they'll realize that we're all in this together. We just contribute to it in different ways. I don't think you're going to stop my good friends like George Steinbrenner and the other owners from trying to grab off these people with a lot of money. That's the way it is. The marketplace is there and we have to learn how to live with it, but we've got to convince these people that can affect us on our campuses, to not be envious of that. It's a few exceptions of individuals who are doing exceptionally well.
I think if you could solve the problem of faculty attitude toward athletics, there would be hope for their attitude against the administration. They feel it's an obligation that's been handed down that they have to be critical and suspicious of athletics. Yet, deep down, I find many of them truly supportive as long as they feel that the program is being conducted with integrity and that you're not asking for special dispensations for athletes and you're not cheating. We continually have to work to involve faculty and expose as many of them as we can to the athletic programs and it's many workings. Our athletes can help us in this. It's a matter of understanding and respect and it's a battle that will never be completely won. Every incident that happens on a campus or nationally, sets us back. Many of the very quiet and outstanding victories are overlooked during this.
Dr. Holland, you have a program at UCLA that you've been running, dealing with this that you might share with us.
About 10 years ago, I went to a meeting at the university where a faculty member recited a story about a tennis player at UCLA that cheated. I was horrified at this story and asked him the name of the athlete because I wanted to deal with this. As it turned out, it was something that happened 15 years ago at the university .I decided that probably meant that the athletic department wasn't communicating very well and weren't being a part of the academic community. So, we began a series of what we call Faculty Visitations. Once a month, we invite 20 faculty members into the department in the morning for breakfast with us. We also invite five student-athletes, a few coaches and a couple of administrators. We do it with the College of Letters and Science. The invitation comes from the College of Letters and Science. One thing I found out
about faculty, however, is that they don't get up very early and they are never on time. Once I adjusted to that, everything was fine. This program has been going on for a long time. We've talked to a lot of faculty and it's been an eye-opener for me. I didn't realize how much these people don't know about the athletic department except what they read in the paper about this athlete did this or this athlete did that. They had nc idea about the academic support program or about all of the things that we require from the student-athletes. It was a revelation listening to the student-athletes talk to the faculty and the faculty talking to the student- athletes and being people together. It's been marvelous for us and I would recommend it to anybody. It takl a lot of work to put it together, but it doesn't take a lot of money. It just takes heart.
I will share with you a program that Chris Voelz and I put together at Oregon. That was, as part of our awards program, we would have the student-athlete as a senior, invite their favorite faculty member to come 1 a luncheon with them. It started small and it grew. Now, of course, we invite all of the faculty. It's a very inexpensive way to have some outstanding dialogue with your faculty .It really works.
We've just about run out of time. The Round Table topics can be found in the back two pages of the Convention Program. We know that's a highlight. Today is a day for dialogue. The next program comir up will be dialogue with coaches, some of the things we like about what we do, some of the ways they Ca1 see some improvements. I'd ask you to go out now when you leave today and visit with some of the folk the other side of the wall because the money that they've put into NACDA helps keep our expenses down and, in turn, keeps your dues down.
Thank you very much. Thanks to the panel. You've done a wonderful job today.