New Faculty Athletics Representatives to carry on legacy of Meserve

The University is undergoing a transition in the role of Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR) to the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA), President Mary Ellen Mazey has announced.

For nearly 20 years, BGSU has been fortunate to have Dr. Lee Meserve, Distinguished Teaching Professor of biological sciences, as its NCAA representative, the president said in thanking him for his service and commitment. He “has done an outstanding job representing our student-athletes,” she added.

As one of the longest serving FARs in the country, Meserve has a wealth of experience and expertise. He will continue as a FAR this year and then BGSU will transition to two representatives selected this summer by the president: Dr. Ray Schneider, an associate professor of sport management in the School of Human Movement, Sport and Leisure Studies (College of Education and Human Development), and Dr. Donna Trautman, chair of the visual communications and technology education (VCTE) department and VCTE program coordinator in the College of Technology, Architecture and Applied Engineering. Each will have primary responsibility for leading efforts in certain sports and will assist one another in others.

Schneider said, “I comprehend the remarkable accomplishments of Dr. Meserve while he served as the FAR over two decades. There is no question that he has provided a strong role model for both our student-athletes and faculty. I admire the dedication and enthusiasm he put into setting the standard for the next Faculty Athletics Representatives at BGSU.”

Like Meserve, the two new FARs have both a passion for athletics as well as academics and said they are committed to upholding the high standards he set while working with student-athletes, faculty and athletics staff.

Schneider has taught at BGSU since 1998, and is program coordinator for the sport management program, often advising student-athletes on academic eligibility requirements. He has an extensive background related to the intersection of intercollegiate athletics and academics, and has frequently published on issues related to equity in intercollegiate athletics. As part of his research, he has stayed current on NCAA guidelines and bylaws. He also teaches graduate courses directly related to the college athletics. He is a former intercollegiate student-athlete who brings that perspective to the FAR role as well.

“I understand the significance this (FAR) position plays in ensuring that Bowling Green State University continues our excellent reputation for developing student-athletes,” Schneider said.

He will be the lead liaison for women’s cross country, golf, gymnastics, softball and track and field. In men’s sports, he will handle basketball, cross country and golf. He will also represent hockey, with assistance from Trautman, and will assist her with football.

Trautman has been a BGSU faculty member for 26 years and has been involved with athletics through a variety of roles. The recipient of the 2007-08 Athletics Distinguished Service Award, she developed a co-op student relationship between athletics and VCT. She is a member of the Intercollegiate Athletic Committee and a sub-committee member for research. She has been a substitute representative for Meserve at the fall 2015 NCAA meeting and an adviser to student-athletes.

“I believe that academics and athletics go hand in hand,” Trautman said. “For me, teaching is at the core of University. This responsibility happens outside of the traditional classroom/lab as well and in many forms, whether it be working with students regarding career interests, advising or coaching a sport.”

She will have primary responsibility for women’s basketball, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis and volleyball. In men’s sports, she will represent baseball and soccer, as well as football (with assistance from Schneider), and will assist him with hockey.

Faculty Athletics Representatives have wide-ranging responsibilities, and must interact with faculty, intercollegiate athletics staff and student-athletes. They are responsible for certification of the academic eligibility of student-athletes representing BGSU in NCAA and conference participation while serving as the primary liaison between the Athletics Department and the faculty. They play a significant part in ensuring that the University maintains an excellent reputation for developing student-athletes. Additionally, FARs ensure that the institution consistently operates in accordance with the principle of institutional control.

In addition to the NCAA, they represent BGSU with the Mid-American Conference and the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

On campus, the FARs co-chair the President’s Advisory Committee on Intercollegiate Athletics and advise the director of Intercollegiate Athletics and other Athletics Department staff on athletics matters as well as represent the faculty and academic perspectives on athletics matters. They also promote academic achievement among student-athletes and the importance of engagement in curricular and co-curricular programing.