||37th NACDA Convention|
June 16-19, 2002
All NACDA Members
Opening Remarks and Keynote Address
Monday, June 17, 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 Noon
Good morning. I would like to offer a special thanks to 1st Vice President Joe Castiglione of Oklahoma; 2nd Vice President Judy Rose of North Carolina-Charlotte; 3rd Vice President Gene DeFilippo of Boston College; Secretary Tim Gleason of the Ohio Athletic Conference and the entire Executive Committee and NACDA office staff for planning a first-rate Convention program. I would like to add that it has been an honor to serve as your president this year.
For those of you who have registered for the 2002 NACDA golf outing, please be sure to check the golf registration table located in the Gossip Bar with the NACDA Team Pro Shop. As a reminder, buses will depart from the Clock Tower entrance in the hotel's lobby at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
Your feedback on our Convention is extremely important to plan for the future. Please be sure to complete a Convention evaluation form and return it to the NACDA office. You can find the evaluation form in the Convention section of the NACDA web site.
Now, to introduce our special guest, I'd like to bring up Jack Lengyel, interim director of athletics at Temple University, last year's Corbett Award winner and one of NACDA's past presidents. Jack.
Thank you very much. Roger Staubach, Roger the Dodger, scrambled his way to success as a college athlete, an all-pro NFL quarterback and as a successful businessman. He is a Naval Academy graduate. In 1963, he won the Heisman Trophy, the Maxwell Trophy and the Walter Camp Memorial Trophy. While at the Naval Academy, Roger was the recipient of the Thompson Trophy Cup for three consecutive years. In 1965, he won the Naval Academy Athletic Sword as the outstanding mid-shipman student-athlete.
After a four-year tour in the US Navy, including a tour in Vietnam, Roger joined the Dallas Cowboys and led the team to unprecedented flights. He directed the Cowboys to 23 fourth-quarter comeback wins and 14 in the final two minutes of the game or in overtime. He played 11 seasons with the Cowboys and led them to the Super Bowl four times, including two World Championships in 1972 and 1978. The Cowboys went 90-31 with Roger as the turning quarterback.
In 1985, he was selected for the Pro Football Hall of Fame his first year of eligibility. A football locker room at the Naval Academy is named in his honor and this past year, Roger was named to the Walter Camp All-Century Team. He was also selected as the 2000 recipient of the NCAA Teddy Roosevelt Award. His is currently chair of the Board and chief executive officer of the Staubach Company. This is a global, full-service real estate firm with more than 1,200 employees and offices in every major city in the United States and in Europe.
Roger's accomplishments in the business world rivaled his accomplishments in the athletics world. His best accomplishment, however, is when he married Mary Anne Hooper and had five wonderful children. They all reside here in Dallas, Texas.
It is my privilege to introduce a great football player, a great businessman and a great American, Roger Staubach. There will be a brief video first and then Roger will take the podium.
I want to let everyone know that we welcome you to Dallas. The first time I came to Dallas, I wasn't welcomed very well. In 1963, we played SMU on a Friday night and lost 32-28. I'll never forget that game; the referees took the game away from us. We were the number two team in the country. We were 9-1. We came to Dallas, Texas screaming we're number one. Texas was screaming they were number one. They were the only undefeated team in the country. We proved it to them, they were number one all the way.
Now, my wife and I are living in Dallas, Texas. We had talked to a couple hundred thousand people who were at that game since we've been living here. I hear enough about that. We were yankees when we got here, but we decided to stay. When we won the Super Bowl as the Dallas Cowboys, we were Texans then. This is our only home for me and my family. My wife and I go to Cincinnati, Ohio where we have great roots. We came to Dallas with three little girls who were born in the Navy and added two more on Texas soil. Our kids have grown up here and we now have five grand kids. They all live within 10 minutes of each other and about 20 minutes away from us. We love having them around. As a family, we are Texans and it's been more than 30 years for us here in Dallas, Texas.
I went to work in the offices. They didn't pay quarterbacks then quite what they do today. With three little girls and being a 27-year-old rookie, I decided to go to work. I worked for the Henry S. Miller Company. Mr. Miller became my mentor in real estate. I was very lucky. You know, as athletics directors and coaches, the responsibilities you have, the examples you are, not only within your own families, but to those athletes that look to you. To have a mentor is meaningful.
I had a high school coach that made me a quarterback. I didn't want to be a quarterback, but my senior year, I was a quarterback and it changed my life. I had a great mentor in business with Mr. Miller. It's been more than 32 years that I've had experience in real estate. After I retired from football, I became full-time in real estate. Tom Landry was my mentor on the field as the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. He's as good as it gets. He was a great coach. He didn't like running quarterbacks and he adjusted to me and adjusted to some of his playing calls. We had a marvelous relationship. I did have a great mentor on and off the field. This is the reason my wife and I have made sure that Dallas, Texas is our home. We welcome you Dallas.
In a few minutes, Ced will be coming up. One thing that has stood out in my mind is that the challenges I've seen, and I still think I have that challenge as I get older, is to get an even balance to life. I realize that in sports, teamwork isn't just something that is a marketing way of addressing a team, it's something you really dig into. It's very meaningful. The simplicity of it is really respecting someone other than yourself.
Challenges that we see today, within our families, within our communities, is trying to gain and have respect for someone other than just yourself is something you have to work on all of the time. In our world today, we're seeing a lot hate. Even in our own lives, even though we don't have it to this degree, there is this constant fight we have to try to get balance. What's in it for me and that balance is to say what's in it for someone else. It's the taking out of life and also balancing the giving part of responsibilities that you have. You have to work on this all of the time. As a company, we have a lot of tests. We grade each other and this is done confidentially over the computer or the Internet. I'm trying to look at things I need to work on and I'm seeing the results. I know I need to work on those things. Right now, I've got a list and listening is on that list. Maryanne has accused me of not listening enough. That's true and I've got to start working on this. I found out the other day at a teammate's daughter's wedding. Maryanne gave me a whole run down on the family and what the kids were doing. I'm driving along. I don't know what I was thinking about, but I wasn't listening. I was not into it. We got to the wedding. I mentioned how their young son had gotten big. I wonder what he's doing now? That ruined that night. Right away, Maryanne was upset that I wasn't listening to what she was telling me on the way to the wedding. What she was telling me what very important. So, I'm working on things to try to get that balance, not only what is good for Roger, but what's good for someone else.
I'm trying to preach that to a company with more than 1,200 employees. We deal with customers internally, external customers, large corporations, helping them with real estate needs. Our business is sometimes what's in it for me and then I'll try to solve the problem. We're in the service business today. We're the business that asks what does that customer want and how can I get that solution. That takes people and other resources to be able to work together to get that solution if you're going to do it right. Teamwork is critical in business.
The thing I learned most in athletics is that you can't do it by yourselves, especially in the game of football. I had the opportunity to also play baseball at the Naval Academy. The arena taught me that you can't do it by yourself. What's in it for me can also be healthy. It's your aggressiveness, your competitiveness and having that Tiger Woods type of focus. You can say, "I'm going to make it happen at the end." You push everything out of your life for that period of time and that can be healthy. But, you can't push everything out all of the time. You've got to be able to put yourself in other people's shoes and realize where they come from. You need to know about them and, hopefully, get rid of discrimination. You might say you're not that way, but we really are. We do things that really relate to someone because of gender, color or religion. To get that balance is important in every aspect of what we do. We need to make sure we respect someone other than just ourselves.
I feel the responsibilities you have with the student-athletes, the ability to get that balance between athletics and caring about that human being that comes onto your campus to play and will do great things for your school and help with the capital campaigns that your school has, is important. They are also human beings and need to be able to understand the importance of what it means to give everything you have on the athletics field, but also, their life will be affected by the abilities they gain at school. They get that balance. It's everywhere in life, whether it's a student-athlete, how we deal with ourselves and our families and it's in the arena of athletics.
Nowhere is there a greater example then, when in 1971, we had the most talent we ever had in the Dallas Cowboys. We were a team that was supposed to win it all. On paper, we looked good. We had a great coach, Coach Landry. He had a great game plan every week that we played. We said we weren't going to lose at the end of the year so we decided to lose right away. The reason was we didn't have that balance. We had a lot of talent, but it was what's in it for me talent and we weren't thinking about what was in it for someone else. We didn't have the attitude at that time that the New England Patriots did this year when they all ran out as a team. I was watching the game and thought what took place was magical. You see it time and time again. Usually, it's at the foundation of that taking place. There is a respect. That doesn't mean everyone is going to get on the bus, but the momentum is there, the respect is there and they have success. Teamwork is what athletics is all about.
We had to start thinking about what we could do for each other. In 1971 we decided to do that. We wanted to do things for somebody else and not just what is being done for me. The leadership that came out of that meeting. I remember Ditka finished out the meeting by saying that we are going to play the St. Louis Cardinals next week and when that game is over, he promised he would leave everything on the field. If he saw anyone not doing the same, he was personally going to do something about it. There was a bonding that was starting to take place. It was magnificent. We won the next week and the week after. Coach Landry noticed it. We still had a great game plan each week, but you still had to get people caring about someone other than themselves. The arena of athletics is where it happens.
When things don't go well and you only have the one side of you, you become somewhat of a destructive achiever. You look good. You sound good, but I'll tell you where there's arrogance and no humility, that's always a short-term plan. It won't work long-term when it's only about you. All of a sudden, we started to show what it meant when people did care about someone that wasn't just themselves. We won seven straight games, we won two playoff games and we beat Miami. We went from a team that was written off to world champions.
I believe we had that same spirit in 1963 at Navy. We had a wonderful spirit and we cared about each other. I'm working on balance and, as athletics directors, getting that balance between the responsibilities that you have to go out there and make sure you win. Do the very best you can to make sure you have a winning program and, at the same time, you've got so many opportunities that allow you to sacrifice and do things that are creative. To get that balance between those responsibilities and that personal need to someone else is a challenge we meet everyday. Our chemistry tries to drive us toward what's in it for me. You've got to work on those other challenges. I say that because I work on this each and every day at work and at home. I've learned a lot in athletics that has helped me work on these challenges in the arena of balance.
I wish you the very best. Have a great couple of days in Dallas, Texas. It's been a real pleasure to share a few moments with you this morning. Thank you very much.
Thank you Roger. It's very difficult for any of us to think of the U.S. Naval Academy, the Heisman Trophy or the Dallas Cowboys without thinking about Roger Staubach. Probably, nobody has any better balance in their lives than you do. Thank you very much.
It is now my pleasure to introduce our Keynote Speaker, Cedric Dempsey, president of the NCAA. Ced was chosen as the NCAA's third executive director in 1994, a title that was changed to president in 1998. As you know, Ced will be retiring at the conclusion of this year, so we're pleased Ced could join us for one of his final official public appearances.
One of the most eventful years in Ced's tenure was 1999, when the NCAA moved its national office from Overland Park, Kansas to Indianapolis, Indiana, replacing two-thirds of its staff in the process. An 11-year media and marketing rights package with CBS, with at least $6 billion was also reached. Before he joined the NCAA, Ced was the AD at Arizona, Houston, San Diego State and Pacific. He also has coached at Arizona and Albion College in Michigan, and held various positions at Illinois. His career has spanned more than 40 years.
Ced's involvement with the NCAA began in 1972. He has served on many committees, including the Executive Committee. At the time of his appointment as executive director, Ced was serving as the NCAA secretary-treasurer. A national leader in athletics, Ced was on NACDA's Executive Committee from 1989 to 1991. He then moved up to serve as NACDA's third, second and first vice president. Ced received a NACDA Award for Administrative Excellence and was inducted into the NACDA Hall of Fame and received the James J. Corbett Award in 2000. He has also been inducted in several other Halls of Fame. Ladies and gentlemen, please, a warm NACDA welcome for Cedric Dempsey.
Thanks Bill. Thank you NACDA for giving me this opportunity to give my farewell song. It will be a challenge to follow Roger Staubach. Roger, you are always a hard one to follow. It is indeed an honor to be with you today. I can think of no group that I would rather talk to in somewhat my last official responsibility to the NCAA than this group.
As I look around this audience, I see people that I've spent more than five decades with in intercollegiate sports. It is very appropriate, I think, that my last formal comments be made here. They will not be as formal as normally I might give at the NCAA, because I want to talk to you today from my heart and from an observation of having been in sports all of my life and give you some thoughts about where we are. I suppose, if I were to give you a title to my speech today, it would be about my journey. It would be if I were to have a target, it would be the will of the members of the will to act for the common good.
First, let me tell you how I got here. I'll do that as quickly as I can considering my age. My first experience in sports was in a little town in Illinois with about 800 people. About the best we could play was bottle caps and basketball. I had visions of returning to the state finals. It was in Indiana in 1932. I never had an opportunity to fulfill those visions. I moved to a large city, Detroit, Michigan in the suburbs and I was scared to death. I was extremely shy. I was somewhat withdrawn, which I know is hard for you to understand now, but I was. My self-esteem was probably the lowest it's ever been in my life.
I waited for about six months before I found that moment that helped me know where I was going to fit in. I was standing on the playground watching people play football. I always wanted the opportunity to play, but I was never selected. One day, I will never forget this, I looked around and there was no one left on the side line watching. I was asked if I wanted to balance out the teams and play. Just before the Noon hour, I had the opportunity to catch the ball. We played softball at that time. I reached out and grabbed it one-handed for a touchdown. At that point, I realized that was the beginning of the shaping of my life. The self-esteem and self-worth that came out of participating in sport really gave me an education of where my life was going to be headed.
I decided to attend Albion College, after looking at the University of Michigan, Michigan State and Minnesota because, again, that small town growing up experience was coming back to me and I was not sure how comfortable I would be at a large university. It was at Albion where I really changed my life. I had a basketball coach who was a mentor, he was a role model and he provided me, as a second father, direction about where I was headed in my life. It began to help me to understand what the values are in intercollegiate sports.
From there I became a coach. My learning experience began to change again from looking at role models to realizing that young people were looking at me for leadership. I began to learn by learning from others. I learned that as a coach, my major responsibility was to certainly carry on and help develop young people and, more importantly, help to give them self-esteem, self-worth and direction to determine where they fit in. That is one of the most rewarding parts of being a coach. You have lifelong extended family members with the young people you have a relationship with.
I moved in from being a coach to being an athletics director. As Bill commented, I served as athletics director for 28 years. I always stayed ahead of the posse. I was never fired, but I got out just in time in a couple of cases. Athletics director opened up a different world for me. It gave me a few sports that was much broader than being an athlete, much broader than being a coach. It helped me understand the role of athletics in society and the role that society plays from athletics.
I recall having to deal with what you deal with daily now. Not only the student-athletes, coaches and administrators, season ticket holders, media, politicians, but all of those people you deal with on a daily process. It helped me to begin to understand the importance of athletics in our nation today. I will never forget those experiences because they helped to mold where I am today and certainly provided what Roger referred to a moment ago, balance in life.
I understood the political impact that sports has among society and how politics fits an important role in it. We've seen, certainly in our lifetime, Olympic boycotts. We've seen people overcome differences between countries. This past month, I had an opportunity to visit a country that is in great stress right now, Israel. Last year, they sent 30 young people and six coaches to a high school leadership conference in Indianapolis. Those young people went back to Israel and established a program in three cities, a program that was based upon sportsmanship and participation in sport.
It was amazing to me what in nine months, six young people and one coach had done in a community, where young people had to watch suicide bombers where they had friends killed, where there was great violence in schools and great violence in sporting activities. They began to see what you could do by introducing good citizenship and sportsmanship in sport. It had a great impact on the community. I stand before you today having witnessed what happened. It has begun to change a community in a world that has going through tremendous turmoil. It helped me to understand that there is great value in what you and I have been doing all our lives.
For the last eight years, I have certainly been serving the NCAA by way of being the president of this association. Over the last four and one-half months I have prepared and shared with colleges and university CEOs a series of essays under the general heading of, The Will to Act. These essays we have developed explore a dozen issues in college sports, considering key questions that could be asked on each campus and encourages CEOs to find the will to act in addressing those issues.
I won't begin to try to cover all of these issues today. You will receive a collective body of those essays this summer.
You will no doubt agree and, in some cases, disagree with some of the comments I have expressed. I tried to be frank about the problems and creative about addressing the solutions. These essays will be, of course, whether they generate the will to act.
I want to talk to you today about another phrase important to any association. It is especially important and relevant to the NCAA and that is, the will of the members. It is a simple phrase that has generated nearly a century of history of the NCAA and the everlasting question is, what is it? What is the will of the members? Associations exist because, through them,, members can accomplish what no single member acting alone can accomplish. There is a greater good to be served for the benefit of the entire enterprise and often it can only be served through a sacrificed individual's best interest.
So, it was with the founding of the NCAA 94 years ago, the best interest of those institutions with the talent to run the prime way in football, was sacrificed for the greater good of protecting the health and safety of the student-athletes in football. The intervening years have been marked by events that speak to the will of the members. Two decisions in the 1920s created what many will say are the two cornerstones of the NCAA. They are championships and serving as a regulatory body the rules that are made. It was out of concern on a national basis on competitive equity that the association began discussing regulatory policies through the NCAA structure.
The University of Chicago coach and administrator, Walter Camp, gave a warning to the delegates at the 1921 Convention about the dangers of too much structure. He said he believed that college sports should be controlled, but he warned that the association shouldn't get so tangled up with details that the spirit of sport is lost. What we have today is a dependency on policy and regulations that often paralyze us from just doing the right thing. Yet, we can fairly say that launching the association on the path of a regulatory body was the will of the members.
The 1930s and 40s appear in some ways to have been the innocent heyday of college sports, but even then, there was concern about commercialism, salaries of coaches, aid-for-play and what one observer called, a fear of the size of our organizations and of the amounts of money involved in them. In the 1950s, the will of the members created a national office for its association and established its enforcement process of the alleged violations of the rules and regulations it began making 30 years earlier.
Also, in the 1950s, the first television contract was negotiated resulting in the net sum of $1,144,000. We're trying to find out what that $1,144,000 was for. That was the amount of dollars that was valued for the in-season football contract the NCAA had.
Eleven new NCAA championships were added in the 60s and balance between the NCAA and AAU continued. Acting upon the requests of female college sports leaders, the NCAA Executive Committee limited participation in NCAA championships to undergraduate male student-athletes. In the 1970s, a major governance restructuring took place with Division I sub-dividing to better accommodate its various levels of football. Division I also mandated that its philosophy statement would operate their programs as close to self-sufficiency as possible. All this, I remind you, reflected the will of the members.
In the 1980s, the association took on the governance of women's intercollegiate athletics and added women's championships. It also passed one of the most sweeping academic reforms, still referred to today as Proposition 48.
The creation of what we still call the Presidents Reform Agenda came in the 1980s. That effort prompted one faculty member to remind me of the old line, "Reform? Aren't things bad enough already?" Still, all of this came about as the will of the members.
In the 1990s, we saw a continuation of academic reform, the emergence of conferences and conference commissioners as powerful opinionators and another major overhauling of the association's governance structure, this time, to one that directly encourages the role of colleges and university presidents in decision making.
In all fairness, in the last 20 years, we've also seen the will of members tested by the increased dependency to seek in court what the minority failed to win through debate. Two cases are noteworthy because they directly attack the will of the members in anti-trust challenges, the NCAA football television contract case of 1984 and the restrictive earnings coach case of 1998. Both cases suggest that the will of the members is sometimes a tenuous concept. Decisions by association that have accomplished for the whole what no individual member can accomplish alone are sometimes valid only so long if individual members accept the will of the whole. I want to say that again. It's a very important point as we move forward. To accomplish it alone is sometimes valid only if the individual member accepts the will of the whole. Those two pieces have an impact on how the membership exercises its will.
Here we are at the beginning of the new millennium and about to conclude this association's first century. What could we say to date about the state of the association, about the future of intercollegiate athletics and about the will of the members? Conventional wisdom would suggest that college sports will keep on. Often, delicate bonds among 977 athletics programs have been growing strong and will, somehow, find a method for level playing to compete in the various sports with some degree of success.
Some of you have spoken to me about your concerns with the widening gaps between the haves and the have nots, about the disconnect between those charged with management of college sports and the decision-making process and about whether the stakes connected to individual institutional success are too high for such noble notions as exercising the will of the members for the greater good.
Let me touch briefly on two issues I believe must be addressed if intercollegiate athletics are to move forward with the same support and enthusiasm from our constituents as we have enjoyed in the past. First, we have to address the governance structure. Restructuring in 1997, which, ironically, was initiated by Division I, has worked well for Divisions II and III. Those institutions appear to have mastered federated autonomy in a way that gives CEOs a clearer voice in studying the regulatory agenda and still allows the width and breadth of membership to express its will on national policy issues. I wrote about my concerns with this issue in the Will to Act Series since it appears to be that the new structure is more complicated and less membership-friendly than before. The result appears to be a lack of institutional buy-in that strains the confidence of those who must implement national policy at the campus level.
While there is always tension between local needs and national policy, that tension appears to be particularly high right now within Division I. CEOs are generally happy with the structure. They know that they or their colleagues have a firm hand on the governance. Their attendance at the annual conventions isn't required to assure that their voice will be heard. Athletic directors, on the other hand, have voiced their concerns with the process that they believe fails to provide a level of national debate in institutional involvement that the old structure provided.
I made what I thought was a modest proposal for Division I to look at. The role of the Division I Board of Directors should include giving value-base correction through a strategic plan to what issues should be addressed, the order in which they be addressed and the desired outcome. The board should also be the final authority for legislation with national policy implications. The role of the Management Council in Division I should be to devolve legislation to a once-a-year format. We should return to a once-a-year format.
The annual convention would return to providing a platform for discussions and proposals in casting a non-binding vote of recommendation that the board or Management Council would then consider for final deliberations. Such a structure would keep the voting balance in tact with all of the Division I governance bodies and would retain the final authority of college and university presidents and would engage the membership in a way that return confidence, if not full consensus, to the process.
The second issue that is critical for the future is about the financial realities and the funding dilemma. Here are some of the critical facts - spending in college boards is rising by at least $300 million a year. In Division II, after a decade of modest increase in deficits, the average in 1999 jumped 21 percent for the two previous years and rose above a $1 million mark in expenses for the first time. In Division III, expenses jumped 30 percent from 1997 to 1999, by far, the highest single recording period increase since the NCAA has been tracking these numbers.
In Division I, the number of athletics programs that pay their way is decreasing from 48 to 40 in the last two years. The average margin of revenues over expenses for those 40 has increased from $3.8 million, two years ago, to $5 million today. The deficit spending for the rest of Division I is getting worse - the haves and have nots. All of those financial data points, I would remind you, are from the good times, pre-economic downturn and pre-September 11th.
A couple of years ago, others and I termed this as an arms race. In all honestly, it probably is more complex than that. It is really a funding dilemma. For Divisions II and III, it's about controlling costs and living within their means. For Division I, it's about controlling revenue streams. The funding dilemma really hits home in Division I, where the majority of institutions are trying to compete on rising deficits with a few institutions as the majority increasing revenue margins. The impact of this dilemma goes beyond just spending and funding and extends to issues such as self-sufficiency, competitive equity, academic mission and even diversity hiring.
We've all seen that self-sufficiency isn't working, except for a declining few. As the need for new revenue streams increase, preseason and postseason games and playoffs are added which puts additional pressure upon winning. Winning is impacted by a change in competitive equity created by the resource governance.
Athletics programs turn to corporations as partners in financing intercollegiate athletics, but then, face charges of commercializing college sports and amateur athletics. With the pressure to win increasing at a rapid rate, what we now see is the impact upon student-athletes' events, bad recruiting decisions and abandoning the academic mission.
The Catch-22 tendencies of the funding dilemma and the increased pressure to win have diminished the institution's willingness to take chances with untested coaches and athletics administrators and programs. These two issues, conference-based governance pressuring Division I and the funding dilemma have done as much as anything I can think of to pit the power elite against the will of the members to achieve the greater will.
What are the solutions? We can't go back to the good old days. Generally speaking, the only good thing about the good old days are the good old memories. Walter Camp and Buster Kennedy were identifying issues common to us today as early as the 1920s and 1930s. The Yale University president addressed the 1930 NCAA convention with what he called his creed on athletic issues. Among other things, he told the delegates about his concern with the lack of mutual respect and confidence on the part of the participating institutions. He said, "This trust which now too often approaches is all together pointless and intolerable and if allowed to continue, would be fatal." You have to move forward and you have to do so with inspired leadership. You have to apply the values written into our governing practice to the business models we have created. We believe in rigid standards of amateurism, but we also believe in student-athlete welfare. We believe in institutional control, but we also believe that rules compartments. We believe in competitive equity, but also believe in sound fiscal management. The leadership of athletics programs must look beyond the campus and must focus on finding a balance in how we conduct our affairs. We have to do a better job of selling the values of intercollegiate athletics in telling our story.
One of my biggest disappointments over the last eight years as the NCAA president has been a steadying decline on how we support one another. How often, when you read a local column that unfairly classifies sports in the NCAA, do you call the reporter to set the record straight? How often do you stay silent when someone on your campus blames the NCAA for national policy that your own institution may have voted to put in place?
In looking out for our local reputation, we have created an enterprise in which the parts are better than the whole. But, it is the whole that is being judged. We're all being painted by the same paint brush.
What does the future hold for college sports? Whether to continue to be a national umbrella association or a smaller independent federated association, what will be the role of the NCAA national office? If any of you have answers to those questions with any certainty, the office of the NCAA will soon be open.
I do believe, however, that intercollegiate athletics will be better off if the first principle you serve is finding the greater good. As a general rule, the greater good is assuring that athletics are part of and not separate from the academy. It is being aware that we should not be building temples to ourselves, but should be building years for tomorrow. Most importantly, the greater good is about making the education athletic experience the best it can be for student-athletes.
I would remind you of comments about mutual respect. We must trust one another and we must trust in the will of the members. You are the ones to do it. You're on the ground making it happen. The future of intercollegiate athletics is right here. The visibility and influence of intercollegiate sports is an enormous advantage and an awesome responsibility for those of you engaged in managing the affairs of college sports. People are impacted by what you do, by the examples you set, by the values you have learned, by the decisions you make and by the opportunities you continue to provide to those young people looking for a way to fit in.
What is your role for the membership and do you have the will to act for the greater good? Thank you very much. It's been a pleasure being here.
Thank you very much. On behalf of NACDA, we have a special gift for you for taking the time to be with us this afternoon. All of us wish you and June every success and a very enjoyable retirement.
Thanks for your knowledge and leadership of the NCAA for all you've done for NACDA over the years. We greatly appreciate you.
Roger, thank you very much for your warm welcome to your city of Dallas. We have a small token of appreciation for you too. Ladies and gentlemen, Roger Staubach.
We will be staring the James J. Corbett Awards Luncheon at 12:30 p.m. In the meantime, please visit the exhibit hall. Thanks very much.