Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie appointed Fred Glass Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics effective January 1, 2009, after one of the most tumultuous decades in the history of IU Athletics. The fifth athletic director in eight years, Glass was hired to heal and lead a department that had been rocked by the firing of a legendary basketball coach, the untimely death of a beloved football coach, and an infamous major NCAA infractions case that placed the entire department on probation. Since assuming this role, Glass has worked tirelessly to return IU to its rightful place as one of the premier athletics departments in the country.
At the press conference announcing his appointment, Glass set out the four priorities that have been the hallmark of his tenure as athletic director: 1.) play by the rules; 2.) achieve academically and graduate student-athletes; 3.) excel athletically and win championships; and 4.) integrate athletics into the rest of the University. Building on these priorities and working with student-athletes, coaches, faculty and others Glass subsequently unveiled a creed that represents Indiana University Athletics' core values, mission statement, and strategic plan all rolled into one, The Spirit of Indiana: 24 Sports, One Team. It is the standard by which IU Athletics sets priorities, allocate resources, and makes decisions: We are able people of integrity who play by the rules. We reach our highest academic potential and earn Indiana University degrees. We reach our highest athletic potential and win championships. We are unselfish leaders and teammates. We represent Indiana University with passion, appreciation, respect and distinction. We are positive, responsible, inclusive and integrated with our University. We are a part of something bigger than ourselves.
Now in just his fourth year as athletic director, Glass' dynamic and passionate leadership has been the driving force behind his alma mater's return to athletic success consistent with these priorities and values.
To help generate the financial resources necessary to pursue these priorities, Glass has eliminated nearly half of the positions on the senior staff he inherited (4 of 9) freeing up well over a half million dollars; improved private fundraising, including securing the largest gift in the history of IU Athletics: $15 million from Bill and Gayle Cook; renegotiated a lucrative 10-year multimedia rights agreement with Learfield Sports; and negotiated a $3 million agreement to play Penn State at Fed-Ex Field, among other innovative revenue generating initiatives. As a result of Glass's relentless focus on improving the game day football experience in and around Memorial Stadium, football attendance in Glass' first year as AD increased by 32%, the third largest one year percentage increase in average attendance in the country that year and the highest IU attendance since 1992. These attendance gains have been maintained and, in fact, a new attendance record was set in 2010. Again focusing on preserving and improving the game atmosphere in Assembly Hall, in his first year Glass helped to double men's basketball student season ticket sales to the most in the conference- propelling Indiana to the 11th highest total attendance in the country and second highest in the conference. In 2011-2012, men's basketball attendance increased again as IU Athletics sold more student-season tickets (7,632) than any other program in the country and overall attendance ranked ninth nationally.
With the help of these additional resources, Glass has furthered the department's priorities by adding personnel to make IU's compliance staff the second largest in the conference; adding academic advisors to move IU from ninth to third in the conference in student-athlete to academic advisor ratio; building a state of the art, 25,800 square foot, $3 million academic center moving IU from the smallest to the fourth largest (and most modern) academic center in the conference; opening a 25,000 square foot strength and conditioning center, upon completion the largest facility of its kind in the Big Ten - (replacing a facility that ranked last in the conference); opening Cook Hall, the finest basketball development facility and program shrine in the country; and otherwise improving the facilities of all 24 of IU's sports programs. In August 2011, Glass secured IU Board of Trustees approval for construction of a new baseball and softball complex to be located on the athletics campus. Completion of the$19.8 million baseball/softball project is scheduled for the 2013 season. Glass successfully guided IU Athletics off of NCAA probation in November, 2011.
To ensure that the department meets the promise of The Spirit of Indiana, Glass established The Indiana University Department of Intercollegiate Athletics Excellence Academy. The Excellence Academy integrates athletic department and university resources to assess, measure and ensure progress toward specific personal development goals. The Academy fully integrates the athletic department's academic support and life skills development programs, innovative strength and conditioning regimens, advanced sports medicine and athletic training services, expert sports psychology staff, and one of the very few full-time sports nutritionists in intercollegiate athletics, along with cutting-edge resources from other parts of the university. The Excellence Academy is emerging as one of the nation's most innovative and comprehensive student-athlete development programs in the country.
In 2011, Glass established the Spirit of Indiana Showcase, an annual awards gala celebrating the top athletic and academic achievements of IU student-athletes over the last year. Glass also announced the creation of The Spirit of Indiana Director's Award that honors the senior male and female student-athletes who, on the whole, best personify the tenets of The Spirit of Indiana: 24 Sports, One Team.
In Glass' tenure, Indiana student-athletes have excelled in the classroom as well as on the playing field. In 2011-2012, the baseball, men's golf and women's tennis teams are among an elite group of Division I sports teams being recognized for scoring in the top 10 percent in their respective sports with their APRs. Men's basketball, men's cross country, men's golf, water polo, women's tennis, men's swimming and diving, and women's swimming and diving had perfect one-year 2011-2012 APR scores of 1,000. The academic success of these teams is fortunately very typical of all IU sports which routinely exceed the NCAA 925 standard by a very large margin. In the 2011-12 school year, 243 Indiana University student-athletes earned Academic All-Big Ten distinction (including 24 football players, the most in school history). In 2012, swimmer Margaux Farrell earned the 2012 Wayne Duke Postgraduate Award, honoring a Big Ten student-athlete for their achievements in academics, athletics, extracurricular activities and leadership.
On the field since Glass's arrival, eight IU teams have won conference championships, 18 student-athletes have been named Big Ten Player of the Year in their respective sports (most in the conference), and the department has produced five NCAA individual champions. In the 2011-2012 school year, nine varsity sports programs finished the year ranked in the nation's top 15. Also in 2011-12, 62 IU student-athletes earned All-America distinction (up from 49 the previous year), track and field coach Ron Helmer and diving coach Jeff Huber were named conference coach of the year in their respective sports, men's tennis and women's water polo garnered the most wins in school history, track and field won the Indoor Big Ten Championship and achieved the highest national ranking in program history, men's basketball enjoyed a dramatic turnaround and went to the Sweet 16, rowing was nationally ranked for the first time in school history, and IU beat Purdue handily to retain the Crimson and Gold Cup.
Glass has also made key coaching hires in his short tenure. In the fall of 2009, Glass hired men's soccer coach Todd Yeagley who went on to win the Big Ten championship and Big Ten Coach of the Year honors in his first season at Indiana in 2010. In December of 2010, Glass hired highly respected and record setting offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson from Oklahoma as Indiana's new head football coach. In 2008, Wilson won the prestigious Broyles Award for being the nation's top assistant coach. In 2012, Glass hired one of the winningest women's basketball coaches in history, Curt Miller, from Bowling Green. In his last eight years at Bowling Green, Miller's teams won the regular season or tournament championship or both every year, and Miller was named MAC Coach of the Year six times.
Under Glass' stewardship, Indiana Athletics has been financially self-supporting. Each year of his tenure the Athletic Department has been financially self-sufficient without any special subsidy from the university, tax dollars, or student fees. In fact, the Athletic Department actually pays over $12 million to the University in tuition, room and board, books, and fees for its scholarship student-athletes.
Glass loves supporting IU's student-athletes and often attends competitions and practices, including travelling on road trips with the teams. Glass enjoys being present with the student-athletes, whether it's wearing a kilt at a field hockey game as a result of a challenge with players, sitting on the bench with the volleyball and softball teams, riding the bus with the baseball team, or jumping in the pool with the women's swimming and diving team upon winning their third straight Big Ten title. He also enjoys interacting with IU fans and is a fixture at pregame tailgate gatherings and cheering with the fans in the stands.
As a university vice president, he often attends academic events on campus, including the monthly meetings of the President's Cabinet of which he is a member. Glass has established an athletics sustainability initiative with the goal of becoming "the greenest athletic department in the Big Ten". IU Athletics finished first among Big Ten schools in two categories (Greenhouse Gas and Recycling) in the EPA Gameday Challenge. He served as co-chair of Indiana University's 2010 and 2011 United Way campaigns, during which the Department of Athletics participation rate soared from 9% to 80%. In the spring of 2011, Glass had his head shaved to stand in solidarity with kids fighting cancer at a St. Baldrick's event in Indianapolis, raising over $20,000 for the cause.
In May 2012, Glass received the Distinguished Alumni Award from IU's Robert H. McKinney School of Law. In April 2010, Glass was presented the Trevor R. Brown Award by the students of the Indiana Daily Student and the Arbutus for his contributions to the experiences of student journalists. Among his other honors and awards, Glass received the Brebeuf Jesuit President's Medal in 2007; The St. Thomas More Society Man for All Seasons Award in 2006; the 2006 Sprit of Service Community Service Award from the Archdiocese of Indianapolis; the 2005 Charles L. Whistler Award from The Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee; the 2004 Fred McCashband Outstanding Alumnus Award (Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School); and the National Catholic Education Association Distinguished Graduate Award (St. Thomas Aquinas School in Indianapolis) in 2003.
Glass is a double graduate of Indiana University and had been a well known Indianapolis lawyer and civic leader before being named a vice president and the director of intercollegiate athletics at his alma mater. Born in Indianapolis, Glass earned bachelor's and law degrees from IU in 1981 and 1984, respectively.
Glass played a central role in several major sports-related initiatives in Indianapolis, including negotiating the 30-year agreement to keep the Colts in Indianapolis, developing Lucas Oil Stadium and an expanded Indiana Convention Center, and helping to negotiate the arrangement to regularly bring Final Fours and other major NCAA events to the city. Formerly a partner in the law firm of Baker & Daniels, Glass served as chairman of the firm's management committee and as the volunteer president of the city's Capital Improvement Board. Glass also has served as Chief of Staff to then Governor Evan Bayh, Chairman of then Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson's transition team, and in a number of other civic, legal, and sports related positions.
Glass also served as president of the City of Indianapolis' 2011 Super Bowl Bid Committee, which although not successful for that year, has been credited with successfully laying the groundwork for the city's successful bid for 2012. At the time of Glass's appointment Tony Dungy, former head coach of the Indianapolis Colts, said, "I worked very closely with Fred on the Super Bowl effort, and I was very impressed with his vision, leadership and judgment. Indiana University has made an outstanding choice."
Upon his appointment of Glass, Indiana University President Michael McRobbie said, "In all of these major undertakings, Fred demonstrated a remarkable talent for leadership, for mastering the details of big challenges, for diplomacy, and for consensus building. He has a well-earned reputation as someone who can get the big things done. He is exactly the person we need to take on the challenges our Athletics Department will encounter in the next decade."
Glass and his wife, Barbara, who Fred met at an IU football game and graduated from IU in 1980, are the parents of four children. They are: Katie, 26, a 2008 IU Kelley School graduate who recently married Tom Askey, also a 2008 Kelley School graduate; Joey, 24 (Marquette University `10) who is attending the Indiana University McKinney School of Law; Connor, 20 (IU class of `14); and George, 17. Fred, Barbara, Katie, and Tom are life members of the IU Alumni Association.