He retired as commissioner in 2015.
Former SEC Commissioner Mike Slive has passed away at the age of 77 on Thursday.
Very sad news: Former SEC commissioner Mike Slive passed away today in Birmingham. He was 77.
— George Schroeder (@GeorgeSchroeder) May 16, 2018
Slive, who retired as the conference’s commissioner in July 2015, battled prostate cancer in the late 1990s, announced that he was going to undergo treatment for a recurrence of the cancer with his retirement. In 2017, his friend Ed Meyerson named the Mike Slive Foundation for Prostate Cancer Research after him.
Slive was one of the most influential SEC commissioners in the conference’s modern history, and was a prominent figure in making the conference’s SEC Network a reality in 2014. Here are some of his most notable accomplishments, courtesy of the SEC’s website:
Named to the post on July 2, 2002, the SEC has enjoyed unprecedented championship success under Slive’s leadership. He led the adoption of a new and effective league-wide NCAA compliance initiative, engineered landmark television contracts including the launch of a conference network, and guided the conference through expansion, welcoming two new institutions.
The hallmark of this golden age of the SEC remains a remarkable seven consecutive Bowl Championship Series national titles in football. In all, the SEC has won 75 national championships in 17 of its 21 sponsored sports during Slive’s tenure as SEC Commissioner.
He was also instrumental in pushing for the College Football Playoff, expanding the conference to include Missouri and Texas A&M, and increased the conference’s revenue throughout his tenure.
There were various from figures around the league on Wednesday:
Absolutely heartbroken to hear this. Mike Slive was an incredible mentor, leader and friend. He will be missed, but his legacy will always live on. #RIP https://t.co/bdLkGecfE5
— Greg McElroy (@GregMcElroy) May 16, 2018
I am devastated tonight over the passing of my friend and mentor, Mike Slive. I knew Mike was not feeling great and, earlier this week, I wrote about his impact on my life. I shared this with Mike earlier today and wanted to share it with you, as well. https://t.co/yqiKZLjUQe pic.twitter.com/x6QhXVhS40
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) May 16, 2018
Mike Slive was an incredibly influential in myThere was no finer man In intercollegiate Athletic t I am heart broken by his passing… I owe
— Jeff Long (@jefflongRNR) May 16, 2018
Commissioner Slive was unfailingly gracious to me over many years. Would always ask what books I had read lately and was conversant and was insightful far beyond sports. RIP and he will be missed. https://t.co/1QNERs0wLO
— Cecil Hurt (@CecilHurt) May 16, 2018
This deeply saddens me. Mike Slive was an even better person than he was a commissioner. I enjoyed so many wonderful conversations with him over the years. https://t.co/7nzibRepqB
— Stewart Mandel (@slmandel) May 16, 2018
Rest In Peace, Commissioner Slive.