Bill Hancock: What they're saying about the College Football Playoff executive director

by Jenni Carlson Published: August 23, 2014

Bill Hancock has a new job this fall — executive director of College Football Playoff. Here’s what several folks who have known him for years had to say about the Oklahoma native.

Chuck Neinas, former Big Eight commissioner who hired Hancock as the league’s media relations director in 1978: “The thing about Bill, he’s just such a likeable cuss. When you’re trying to sell your program … that’s the type of person you’re looking for. The other part of it is, and it’s very important … he’s sitting there dealing with a lot of egos. He has to sometimes slow ball it to get everybody onto the same page. And his patience and demeanor help him in that respect.”

Craig Thompson, Mountain West commissioner who has known Hancock since 1978 when he was the assistant sports information director at Kansas State: “Two tremendous traits that Bill has: patience and communication skills. He listens very well. He absorbs. He integrates a lot of thoughts into a solution. He’s folksy, but he’s smart. ... As I recall, there wasn’t an extremely long discussion or selection process (when deciding who should be the College Football Playoff executive director). Why would we change with the effective job he had done with the BCS? It wasn’t broken. Why fix it?”

Karl Benson, Sun Belt commissioner who was one of Hancock’s co-workers at the NCAA: “One of my all-time favorite people. ... He brought credibility to an entity [the BCS] that had such negativity to it. He brought the credibility. He brought the honesty. When you talk about Bill Hancock’s characteristics, honesty and integrity are his two most prominent.”

by Jenni Carlson
Columnist
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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