At times reminiscent of a Comedy Central roast, the Laker nation said goodbye and thank you to retiring athletic director Tim Selgo at a June 24 reception at the Alumni House.
Notre Dame head football coach Brian Kelly was a surprise guest. He said he didn't want to miss a chance to thank Selgo for helping build Grand Valley's athletic program to among the tops in the nation. Kelly was head football coach for the Lakers from 1991-2003 and brought Grand Valley its first national championship in 2002.
Kelly said Selgo was largely responsible for Grand Valley's athletic successes that began in the early 2000s and continue today because of his ability to manage relationships among all the personalities involved.
"It's the relationships between coaches and parents, coaches and players, his ability to broker all these relationships is unique," Kelly said. "Tim's strength, to me, is to get everyone going in the right direction."
Since Selgo was hired in 1996, the Lakers have amassed 11 Learfield Sports Directors' Cup trophies for having the top program in NCAA Division II, and 18 consecutive Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Presidents' Cups.
The roast took off when Dan Balice, ’82, came to the podium. Balice, attorney and mayor of Ionia, told jokes about Selgo's years as a basketball star at Pettisville (Ohio) High School and the University of Toledo, and poked fun at some family members. Balice said he was now hitching his coattails to Keri Becker, who will take over as athletic director in July.
Selgo said he was overwhelmed by the number of current and former coaches and student athletes in the room. "There is not one person who could ask for a better career as an athletic director," he said.
His plans include consulting, teaching in the sport management program at Davenport University, and spending more time with his grandchildren.