Wednesday, September 5, 2001 Volume 67, Issue 10


Gladchuk's legacy, UH sports on course

By Jake McKim
Daily Cougar Staff

Standing on John O'Quinn Field at Robertson Stadium following Saturday's devastating
loss to those pesky Rice Owls, the sports editor of The Daily Cougar asked UH Athletics
Director Chet Gladchuk whether a rumor of his jumping ship to the U.S. Naval Academy was true.

Gladchuk took a deep breath, looked around with satisfaction and, like a proud father
watching his kids go off to college, replied, "My work here is done."

Pin Lim/The Daily Cougar

Athletics Director Chet Gladchuk relaxes in his office as he talks about the
improvements achieved during his four years at the helm of the athletics program.

Apparently deciding it was time to take on a new project, Gladchuk officially accepted
the AD position at Navy because of the intangibles the job offers -- less pressure to win,
close ties to the Northeast and an abundance of fan and financial support.

At UH, Gladchuk endured the constant strain of trying to win, something that is less
heavily emphasized at Navy.

Many may criticize Gladchuk for leaving before the job is done. While his contract was
for seven years, he completed only four. Gladchuk leaves our fine school's Athletics
Department with much more than it had when he first arrived in July 1997.

Gladchuk inherited a sports program that was plunging into the abyss of mediocrity and
turned it into a reputable program that appears on the verge of doing great things again.

Robertson Stadium now looks like a real collegiate football field. Women's sports are
suddenly emerging as a force at UH. Fan support seems to be steadily growing and the
football and men's and women's basketball teams now appear to have solid, stable
coaches who, with time, should be able to put more Ws than Ls in the win-loss column.

While Gladchuk isn't sticking around until the end, it can be said that the next AD will
inherit the fruits of Gladchuk's labor, and for that, the next administrator should be

Who can blame Gladchuk for moving on to bigger and better things? While the
instability of the AD position frustrates many UH fans, what we should all do is
remember the legacy Gladchuk left behind and say, "Thank you."

Despite the loss to Rice, head football coach Dana Dimel had one of the best recruiting
classes in a long time for UH. Things should begin to improve once those players begin
to make their mark.

Women's head basketball coach Joe Curl is bringing in all kinds of talent and should
have a terrific team on his hands beginning this season.

The men's basketball team is only one or two decent recruiting classes away from being
a Top 25 team, and this year should show notable improvement over last season.

In addition, the track and field, volleyball, soccer, golf and swimming and diving teams
are on solid ground and successful.

We should all wish Gladchuk good luck in his quest to right the ship at Navy and begin
the search for a new AD who will be Gladchuk-esque in the pursuit of success at UH.

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