Actionable Recommendations to Increase Senior Diverse Leadership in FBS College Sports


  • Sean Frazier, Associate Vice President & Director of Athletics, Northern Illinois University
  • China Jude, Ed.D., Senior Associate Athletics Director & Senior Woman Administrator, University of Wyoming
  • Jerlando F. L. Jackson, Ph.D., Vilas Distinguished Professor, Department Chair, University of Wisconsin
  • Joe Karlgaard, Ph.D., Director of Athletics, Recreation & Lifetime Fitness, Rice University
  • Eddie Nuñez, Director of Athletics, University of New Mexico
  • Natasha Oakes, Senior Associate Athletic Director for Compliance, University of North Texas
  • Renae Myles Payne, Ed.D., Senior Associate Athletics Director & Chief Diversity Officer, University of Miami
  • Ted White, Deputy Athletic Director, University of Virginia

Webinar Recap

Earlier this week, LEAD1 Association (“LEAD1”) released a white paper (download HERE) titled “Actionable Recommendations to Create More Diverse Senior Leadership in NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) College Sports.” In that regard, on Thursday, LEAD1 held a virtual forum to discuss the paper led by its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Working Group. Here is the recording of the webinar, which outlines the following ten actionable recommendations highlighted in the paper to help rectify racial disparities in FBS college sports:

  1. Entities within NCAA Division I college sports, including the NCAA, College Football Playoff (CFP), and FBS conferences should take greater responsibility, through the use of their platforms and resources, to help rectify racial disparities;
  2. The enterprise of FBS college sports, whether through head coach, athletic director, or conference commissioner employment contracts, should tether diversity hiring to financial incentives;
  3. FBS college sports should create a highly selective, year-round, diversity program that can help sponsor more diverse senior-level candidates;
  4. FBS conferences should each create an annual summit with a concerted effort of exposing entry-level and mid-level people of color to key stakeholders;
  5. The NCAA should create a national mentorship program, particularly for people of color, given the proliferation of virtual technology;
  6. Search firms and institutions should seek to follow certain basic principles to help people of color through the search process, and a “scorecard” should be created to grade relevant search firms based on their annual success in presenting a diverse final candidate list to institutions;
  7. The NCAA should create an added layer of attestation with respect to college sports leaders receiving requisite training related to diversity, equity, and inclusion, particularly with regard to implicit bias;
  8. The Athletics Diversity and Inclusion Designee (ADID), typically within FBS athletics departments, should also receive the requisite training; and FBS athletic departments should be graded with respect to their training and education programs;
  9. ADIDs should be given the power to influence and shape policies within the athletic department and across campus, in substantial collaboration with campus administration, including with respect to responding to student-athlete demands; and
  10. Athletic departments should take recommended measures to further improve diversity, equity, and inclusion on their campuses, particularly regarding cultural issues.