Panelists were Sandy Alderson, the New York Mets general manager; Marilee Dean Baker, a groundbreaker in athletics who served as director of athletics at Michigan State University (and hired Tom Izzo as basketball coach) and elsewhere; former professional tennis player Tom Gullikson, and yours truly.
We covered many topics – the impact of TV money on college sports and the agitation by some players for compensation or union protection; baseball’s playoffs and the outlook for the Mets; the state of tennis and its outreach to younger players; sports and media.
Sandy Alderson had just driven down from Port St. Lucie, where the Mets train (and had won on the strength of two home runs by Curtis Granderson). Many in the crowd were/are New Yorkers, and they were asking about the team’s prospects considering its limited player payroll (about $87 million).
Baker has a fabulous background as an advocate for not only women in sports but college athletics as a whole. She won 12 varsity letters as a college athlete and also ran athletics programs (women’s or men’s) at Princeton and the University of Minnesota.
Gullikson was a renowned doubles player with his late brother Tim (his twin, younger by five minutes) and Tom continues to coach and teach the sport he loves.
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