The Division IA Faculty Athletics Representatives are greatly saddened by the news that Myles Brand died today, Sept 16, 2009. We know what a deadly disease is pancreatic cancer. We hoped against hope that Myles would beat the odds.
As NCAA president from January 1, 2003 until his passing, Myles was an ally and supporter of our association as we work toward the betterment of college athletics. His most significant contribution was his leadership in academic reform. Among other significant initiatives undertaken through his leadership were the efforts to achieve greater integration of athletics departments and student-athletes into the university; focusing prime attention on the well-being of student-athletes; providing a framework for evaluating commercialism issues; and looking at recruiting and other issues in men’s basketball. He has been an able and articulate spokesperson for college athletics, particularly in advocating for sportsmanship and ethical behavior. In areas where institutions, and not the NCAA, have the operational voice – coach hiring and salary decisions chief among them – Myles has been a strong advocate for diversity in hiring and for a rule of reason in salaries. His leadership will be sorely missed among all NCAA member institutions, in the national office, and by the Division I Faculty Athletics Representatives. We extend our sympathy to Myles wife and family.