Indiana athletic director Fred Glass announced Monday he will retire at the end of this academic school year.
The 60-year-old Glass spent the past decade rebuilding the basketball program’s reputation following an NCAA scandal, rebranding the football program and renovating athletic facilities.
Now, Glass plans to leave on top — with the men’s basketball team on the cusp of re-entering the Top 25, the women’s basketball team posting the highest ranking in school history and the football team with its best season in more than a quarter-century.
“It’s time,” Glass said in a statement released by the athletic department. “It’s an all-in, all-consuming role and I’ve loved it, but I’m ready to step back and do something that keeps me closer to home with more time with my granddaughters and the rest of my family.”
The release said Glass notified Indiana President Michael McRobbie recently of his decision.
Glass became a familiar face around campus, lobbying students to attend football games and seated just behind the scorer’s table at basketball games.
But his reputation was built through a combination of difficult decisions that have led to unmitigated successes.
His tenure may be best remembered for the re-emergence of the men’s basketball team following rules violations that embarrassed the university. The Hoosiers made their first statement with a last-second upset over No. 1 Kentucky in 2011, then returned to the No. 1 spot in 2012 and won two Big Ten championships under former coach Tom Crean.
When Crean couldn’t sustain that success, Glass fired his coach and hired Archie Miller, who has the Hoosiers positioned to crack the Top 25 once again.
Under Indiana native Teri Moren, the women’s basketball team has seen unprecedented success. The Hoosiers have reached the postseason each of the past four seasons, winning the WNIT title in 2017-18, and last week ascended to No. 12 — an all-time best.
Another Indiana native, Tom Allen, has led the Hoosiers to their first eight-win season in football since 1993, their third January bowl game and their first postseason trip to Florida following years of struggles. Glass hired Allen in December 2016 when Kevin Wilson resigned after being scrutinized for his treatment of players.
The baseball program also attained new successes while the school’s other traditionally strong programs — men’s soccer, swimming ad track — have continued to cement those reputations.
His most lasting impact might be of the brick and mortar variety.
Glass oversaw renovations to Assembly Hall and Memorial Stadium, the basketball and football facilities, as well as new construction for other sports.
“His legacy will be one of strong and competitive athletics programs and teams that play be the rules, a pervasive commitment to compliance and integrity, a commitment to excellent academic performance, record fundraising and magnificent new or renovated facilities,” McRobbie said in a statement. “He is also widely respected as one of the best athletic directors in the Big Ten.”
An attorney by trade, Glass served as chief of staff for Indiana Gov. Evan Bayh from 1989-93. During his tenure as president of the Marion County Capital Improvement Board, from 2000-07, he oversaw the construction of Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
He also served on Indianapolis’ Super Bowl bid committee as well as the organizing committees for the NCAA and Big Ten basketball tournaments in Indy.
McRobbie said the search for Glass’ successor would begin soon.