Aug. 2, 2005
COLUMBUS, Ohio – AndyGeiger, Ohio State’s director of athletics from 1994-2005, will receive an Honorary Varsity “O” from the Ohio State Varsity “O” Men’s Alumni Association Sept. 16 at the OSU Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Geiger will become the 17th recipient of the honorary award.
Past honorary Varsity “O” recipients include former athletics directors Ed Weaver and Jim Jones, former team physician Dr. Bob Murphy, past Buckeye football coach Earle Bruce, associate athletics director for communications Steve Snapp, former head athletic trainers Mike Bordner and Billy Hill, and Novice Fawcett, past Ohio State University president from 1956-72.
During his 11 years in Columbus, Geiger was regarded as one of the most respected leaders in college athletics. He administered a program with 36 sports, nearly 1,000 student-athletes and an annual operating budget that annually exceeds $85 million.
Geiger is perhaps known for his “building boom” on the Ohio State campus, leading the funding for construction of some of the finest venues in collegiate athletics. Sports complexes erected during his tenure include the Jerome Schottenstein Center, where the Buckeyes men’s and women’s basketball and men’s hockey teams play their home games, Bill Davis Stadium for baseball and Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, which plays host to lacrosse, soccer and track and field events. The gymnastics, fencing and wrestling programs benefited from the construction of the state-of-the-art Steelwood Training Facility. Also scheduled to open in the spring is the The Bill and Mae McCorkle Aquatics Pavilion that will be used by the men’s and women’s swimming and diving and synchronized swimming teams. Other facility upgrades have been made to the OSU Scarlet Golf Course, the OSU Ice Rink and to Buckeye Field (softball).
Geiger also was responsible for adding three women’s sports – hockey, lacrosse and rowing – and has assembled one of the premier coaching staffs in America. Ohio State finished third and fourth, respectively, in the Directors’ Cup, which recognizes the best overall programs in the country, in Geiger’s final two years.
Under Geiger’s watchful eye, Ohio State teams not only qualified for NCAA postseason play on a regular basis, but they did well in the classroom, where in 2004, 403 student-athletes attended the annual Scholar-Athlete awards banquet, which requires a minimum grade-point average of 3.0. During the last two years, Ohio State has had more student-athletes named to the Academic All-Big Ten Team than any other school. At the end of the autumn 2004 quarter, the average GPA of Ohio State’s student-athletes stood at 3.0.
Much of the academic progress can be attributed to another Geiger-led construction – the Younkin Success Center. Opened in the spring of 2000, the Younkin houses the Student-Athlete Support Services Office and serves as a laboratory and resource center for Ohio State’s student-athletes.
Since Geiger’s arrival in 1994, 19 teams have made 103 appearances in the NCAA tournament and five teams have won 15 national championships: fencing (2004), football (2002), men’s gymnastics (1996 and 2001), pistol (2000 and 2004) and nine national championships by synchronized swimming.