NCAA President Brand Dead Of Cancer At 67

Ryan MaloneyContributor IISeptember 16, 2009

NCAA President Dr. Myles Brand died Wednesday after a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 67 years old.

Brand will perhaps be best remembered for his tenure as the 16th president at Indiana University. He made headlines on Sept. 10, 2000 when he fired the school's iconic basketball coach, Bobby Knight, following several reports of bullish behavior. Fans, students, and alumni met the announcement with an aggressive protest that forced Brand from his home that night. Others praised Brand for holding Indiana University's standards in higher regard than its athletics.

In 2002, Brand left Indiana to become president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, a position he held until his death. Brand fought to make academics the primary focus of every student-athlete. "Intercollegiate athletics can be a vital force in America's culture, exemplifying the positive spirit and values of our way of life," said Brand in a speech to the National Press Club. "[But] academics must come first."