NCAA Championships and Alliances
Two well-respected administrators with extensive basketball background have been named to the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee.
Bernard Muir, a former men’s basketball student-athlete at Brown University and a former director of the NCAA men’s basketball championship, along with Mark Hollis, who is credited with developing some of college basketball’s most innovative events, will begin their terms September 1, 2012. The duo will replace current committee chair Jeff Hathaway, a consultant to the Big East Conference, and University of Texas-San Antonio Director Athletics Lynn Hickey, whose terms expire August 31.
Muir has been the University of Delaware’s director of athletics and recreation services since 2009. Prior to that, he served as director of athletics at Georgetown University from 2005-09, and from 2000-05 he worked as both associate athletic director for student-athlete welfare and development and deputy director of athletics for administration and facilities at the University of Notre Dame. From 1992-98, he was the NCAA’s assistant director of the Division I men’s basketball championship before being promoted to director of operations for the event from 1998-2000. Muir also worked at Butler University and Auburn University after earning his undergraduate degree from Brown in 1990 and his Master’s degree from Ohio University in 1992.
A four-year letterman and team captain at Brown, Muir is a member of USA Basketball’s Board of Directors and the McLendon Scholarship Steering Committee that works towards the advancement and education of young minority sports professionals.
“I’m extremely excited to have the opportunity to serve on the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee,” Muir said. “As a former NCAA staff member who worked on this championship closely with the committee, it is indeed an honor to now work with such a group from this perspective.”
Hollis earned his undergraduate degree from Michigan State University in 1985, serving as student manager for the Spartan men’s basketball team under legendary coach Jud Heathcote. He earned a Master’s degree from the University of Colorado in 1992 and then joined the staff at the Western Athletic Conference, working his way up from administrative assistant to assistant to the commissioner and then assistant commissioner. From there, he spent two years as assistant and associate athletic director at the University of Pittsburgh before returning to Michigan State in 1995. As senior associate athletics director, Hollis oversaw all external operations, including marketing and promotions, community relations, fundraising for special events, sports information, ticket operations, spirit groups, broadcast services and corporate sponsorships. He also had sports management supervision of the men’s basketball program while also supervising the cheerleading, dance teams and band programs.
Hollis is credited with conceptualizing the “BasketBowl,” establishing a then-world record crowd of 78,129 who witnessed a 2003 game between the Spartans and the University of Kentucky at Detroit’s Ford Field. The concept, which involves placing the court in the center of the stadium, has been used at the past three Final Fours. It was also Hollis’ vision that led to Michigan State playing the University of North Carolina in November in the first basketball game to be played on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier.
During Hollis’ tenure, the Spartans have appeared in 14 consecutive NCAA tournaments, including six Final Fours. He is chair of the Division I Amateurism Cabinet and a member of the NCAA’s Men’s Basketball Issues Committee.
“I’m both excited and humbled to be appointed to the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee,” Hollis said. “The growth of college basketball since my first level of involvement as a student manager in 1980 has been quite remarkable. I have the greatest respect of those who have impacted the sport, including those with the NCAA office and those having served on this committee. With new opportunities and formidable challenges on the horizon, I take seriously the anticipated contributions that come with serving the NCAA membership as part of this esteemed group.”
The committee will be chaired in 2012-13 by Mike Bobinski, the director of athletics at Xavier University. Other committee members include Ron Wellman, the director of athletics at Wake Forest University; Doug Fullerton, the commissioner of the Big Sky Conference; Scott Barnes, the director of athletics at Utah State University; Steve Orsini, the director of athletics at Southern Methodist University; Joe Alleva, the director of athletics at Louisiana State University; Jamie Zaninovich, the commissioner of the West Coast Conference; and Joe Castiglione, the director of athletics at the University of Oklahoma.