Mike Slive, the former commissioner of the SEC, has passed away at the age of 77, the SEC announced Wednesday evening. A memorial to pay tribute to the landmark commissioner of the conference is scheduled for Friday in Birmingham.
A native of New York, Slive fit right in with the SEC. After serving as commissioner of Conference USA from 1995 through 2002, Slive thrived as commissioner of the SEC from 2002 through 2015. Slive’s run as commissioner of the SEC saw the conference rise to the top of the college football landscape and continued to improve and perform well in other sports as well.
As commissioner of the SEC from 2002 through 2015, Slive oversaw the SEC expand to add Texas A&M and Missouri and set the foundation for the conference’s rising television revenue packages that would include the SEC Network. During Slive’s run as commissioner, the SEC was home to eight BCS national champions, which included a run of seven consecutive national champions from the 2005 season through the 2012 season.
Current SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, who succeeded Slive in 2015, offered a statement regarding the passing of Slive.
“For me it’s about Mike for how he affected me. He was a friend before he was the boss, he was a friend while, he was a boss and he was a friend after,” Sankey said in a statement. “My heart goes out to Liz, to Anna, Judd, Abagail. He’s a great person and I’m privileged to come to know him the way I did.