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How An Athletic Director May Manage Expectations

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Mike Gilleran, Athletic Director at Archbishop Riordan High School in San Francisco, is also the Executive Director of the Santa Clara University Institute for Sports Law and Ethics. He previously served as the commissioner of the West Coast Conference, spending over 30 years in intercollegiate athletics. Earning his J.D. from Seattle University in 1975, he focused on Sports Law and has since been involved in almost every aspect of college and high school sports.

One of the most difficult jobs for any athletic director is managing the expectations of coaches and parents. While both groups may expect wins, it is more important that they stay focused on the process.

An athletic director can help manage coaches' expectations by reminding them of the importance of process and supporting them in keeping athletes involved and motivated regardless of scoreboard results. For parents, it is important to let children have their own experiences, keep wins and losses in perspective, and focus on day-to day tasks and supporting their children in a way that makes sports enjoyable.