(7-18-97) -- Chet Gladchuk, after a six-and-a-half-year term as Boston College athletic director, will be named today as the University of Houston's new AD, effective Aug. 25.
Gladchuk, a 1973 alumnus and former BC football player, was appointed athletic director in December of 1990, succeeding William J. Flynn. The son of a star Eagle football player from the 1940s, Gladchuk - who had previously served as the Tulane University AD - oversaw a major expansion of athletic resources and continued academic success among Boston College student-athletes.
"During his years as athletic director at Boston College, Chet Gladchuk made an immense contribution to our intercollegiate and intramural programs," said University President William P. Leahy, SJ. "He is a person of vision and creativity, and he devoted great energy and time to advancing Boston College athletics. I thank Chet, his wife Kathy and their family for all they gave to BC, and I wish them well at the University of Houston."
Boston College maintained its strong performance in graduating student athletes in the Gladchuk era. The graduation rate for BC student-athletes is 90 percent, compared to the overall student graduation rate of 86 percent. In 1996, the University was a co-winner of the College Football Association's Academic Achievement Award for graduating the highest percentage of football players in the nation, marking the second consecutive year - and third time in five years - that BC had earned the distinction.
In 1996-97, more Boston College teams qualified for National Collegiate Athletic Association and national championship competition than in any one season during the University's history. During Gladchuk's tenure, the football team appeared in three bowl games, and the men's basketball team has participated in the NCAA championship tournament in three of the past four years.
In addition, donations to all varsity sports programs increased significantly during the same period. The University also renovated and expanded Alumni Stadium to a new capacity of 44,500 under Gladchuk, and the number of BC season football tickets sold grew from 12,000 to 40,000.
Gladchuk's tenure was not without turmoil, however. Last fall, he asked Middlesex County District Attorney Thomas Reilly to conduct a probe of Eagle football players suspected of illegal gambling activity. As a result of the investigation, BC suspended 13 players from the team, and in January suspended eight students, all non-athletes, for illegal bookmaking activities. Earlier this week, Reilly announced he had closed his investigation and issued grand jury indictments for six men, none of whom are BC students. There also were public controversies involving the men's hockey and basketball programs while Gladchuk was athletic director.
Prior to his arrival at Tulane in 1987, Gladchuk had been associate athletic director at Syracuse University.
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