Big 12 Announces Third Forum on State of Collegiate Athletics

Big 12 Conference Website and Official Release

The Big 12 Conference has announced the lineup for its third “State of College Athletics” Forum to further examine the issues facing college athletics. The Forum, which will be held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Monday, April 20, continues the discussion from the two previous 2014 events. 

The third “State of College Athletics” is made up of two Forums. The first of the two Forums titled “The Voice of Those Impacted by Reform” features student-athletes discussing the issues facing college sports and offering their opinions. The second Forum, “Where Do We Go From Here?” takes a broad look at college sports today and its future. This Forum will feature respected authorities from intercollegiate athletics, university leadership and sports journalism representing a diverse range of opinions and perspectives. 

“Since the Big 12 Conference introduced the ‘State of College Athletics’ Forum a number of changes and reforms have been passed by the NCAA, including full grants in aid up to the full cost of attendance, as well as granting autonomy to the five high visibility conferences,” said Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby. “It is important these Forums evolve alongside the changing collegiate sports landscape. Insights from student-athletes, who will be directly impacted by present and future reforms, will provide a unique voice not heard previously in the Forums. Our second round of individuals participating in the other panel represent all sides of the issues facing college athletics. The Forum format allows them to freely and openly address and discuss the future of collegiate athletics.” 

Additional details for the April 20 event include (all times local):2:00 p.m. Forum I begins with a 75-minute panel discussion entitled, “The Voice of Those Impacted”
3:15 p.m. Break
3:45 p.m. Forum II continues with an additional 90-minute panel discussion entitled, “Where Do We Go from Here?”
5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Reception (Note: On-site locations will be provided for one-on-one interviews with panelists)

The Voice of those Impacted 

  • Sune Agbuke – Baylor University
  • Ty Darlington – University of Oklahoma 
  • Kyven Gadson – Iowa State University
  • Rachel Scott – University of Texas

Where Do We Go from Here

  • Jay Bilas – ESPN
  • Bob Bowlsby – Commissioner, Big 12 Conference
  • Charles Davis – FOX Sports
  • Doug Gottlieb – CBS Sports
  • Lisa Salters – ESPN
  • Kirk Schulz – President of Kansas State University and Chair of the NCAA Board of Governors
  • Gary Williams – Former Men’s Basketball Coach 

Biographical Information about the Panelists: 

Sune Agbuke averaged nearly 20 minutes per game as a key member of the Baylor Women’s Basketball team this past season. She completed her undergraduate degree program in August 2014 and is currently attending Baylor Law School. This year Agbuke was named a second team Senior CLASS All-American. 

Ty Darlington is a graduate student who plays football for the University of Oklahoma. In 2014 he was named to the Capital One Academic All-America First Team. He started all thirteen games at center for the Sooners last season. Darlington was one of three Big 12 Conference student-athlete representatives who took part in the recent NCAA Autonomy Governance legislative session. 

Kyven Gadson is a three-year letterman for the Iowa State University wrestling team. In 2015 he was an Academic All-Big 12 First Team member. He is a NCAA National Champion, and Big 12 Champion in the 197-pound weight class. Gadson is also the 2014-15 Big 12 Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) president. 

Rachel Scott is a junior at the University of Texas and an infielder on the Longhorns’ softball team. In 2013 she was named a NFCA All-America Scholar Athlete and in the fall of 2012 and 2013 she was named to the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll. She is the Big 12 Conference representative for the Division I SAAC. 

Jay Bilas is a two-time Emmy nominee for “Best Studio Analyst” and is currently a college basketball analyst for ESPN. He is a regular contributor on College GameNight and College GameDay as well as SportsCenter, ESPNEWS, and ESPN Radio. Bilas played basketball at Duke University. 

Bob Bowlsby is the commissioner of the Big 12 Conference. Prior to his role at the Big 12, Bowlsby spent six years as Athletics Director at Stanford University, and 15 years as the chief administrator for the University of Iowa Department of Athletics. Bowlsby has chaired several NCAA committees and served on the United States Olympic Committee Board of Directors. 

Charles Davis is the lead analyst for FOX College Football. Davis makes weekly contributions to “Power Rankings” on as well as an analyst for the NFL Network. He has formerly worked with TBS, ESPN, CBS, The Golf Channel, and Sun Sports. Davis played college football at the University of Tennessee. 

Doug Gottlieb is a former NCAA and professional basketball player who now works for CBS Sports. He hosts an afternoon show on CBS Sports Radio and participates in CBS Sports Minute Radio Show, which airs throughout the country. 

Lisa Salters is currently the sideline reporter for ESPN’s Monday Night Football, as well as the lead sideline reporter for ESPN’s coverage of the NBA on ABC. Previously, Salters was a key contributor on ESPN/ABC College Football. She played basketball at Penn State University. 

Kirk Schulz is the president of Kansas State University and received the 2012 Chief Executive Leadership Award from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. He is the Chair of the NCAA Board of Governors. Schulz previously held the VP role for Research and Economic Development at Mississippi State University where he was also the Dean of Engineering. 

Gary Williams has served as the head basketball coach for University of Maryland, Ohio State University, Boston College, and American University. He led Maryland to an NCAA Championship in 2002. Williams retired from coaching after the 2011-12 season and is now a basketball analyst for the Big Ten Network.