> ITA Tennis Homepage > About ITA > News > Archived News > 2009 News Archive > NCAA President Myles Brand passes away

NCAA President Myles Brand passes away


Link to NCAA official site

NCAA President Myles Brand, the first university president to serve as the Association's chief executive and a champion of academic reform, fiscal responsibility and student-athlete well-being, died Wednesday from pancreatic cancer.

Brand broke the news that he had cancer in January at the NCAA convention and continued to handle the organization's day-to-day operations, despite undergoing treatment.

"This is a very sad moment for the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) and for intercollegiate athletics as a whole,” said ITA Executive Director, David A Benjamin. “Myles Brand was a outstanding leader as the NCAA President, who had an enormous impact on college athletics and in particularly the NCAA emphasis on the well-being of the student-athlete.”

Last fall, Myles Brand appeared in a USTA/ITA DVD directed towards college presidents and administrators emphasizing the importance of maintaining participation opportunities for young men and women in college athletics.

In the video, President Brand said that, “There is a disturbing trend in intercollegiate athletics these days that we definitely have to address directly. I think it’s critically important that we maintain the participation opportunities for young women and men in varsity tennis and many other sports too. We do ourselves no good when we take away those opportunities. We deprive these young people of opportunities to participate in life in a way that adds value to their education.”

In October 2002, Myles Brand was appointed to serve as President of the NCAA. After his term began in January 2003, Brand pushed for tougher eligibility standards for incoming freshmen and current students. Eventually, the NCAA adopted two new academic measures, the Academic Progress Report and the Graduation Success Rate -- calculations that provide real-time statistics on how athletes are performing in the classroom.

Before taking over at Indiana, Brand spent five years as president at the University of Oregon. He also held administrative posts at Ohio State and led the philosophy departments at the University of Arizona and Illinois-Chicago after starting his career as a professor at the University of Pittsburgh.

Brand earned his bachelor's degree in philosophy at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., in 1964 and received a doctorate in philosophy at the University of Rochester in 1967. He is survived by his wife and a son.

Click here to view the entire “Winning with Varsity Tennis: On and Off the Court” video.