Greg Sankey

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Sankey talking with Bill Hancock, Executive Director of the College Football Playoff, on the sideline of the CFP title game.

Greg Sankey (born 1964[1]) is the commissioner of the Southeastern Conference. He was previously employed by the SEC for 13 years in various capacities. Prior to that, he was the commissioner of the Southland Conference.[2][3]

Early life and education[edit]

Sankey is a native of Auburn, New York.[4][5]

Sankey started college as an engineering major at LeTourneau College in Longview, Texas[6] but soon returned back to New York. He earned his associate's degree from Cayuga Community College and an undergraduate degree in education from the State University of New York at Cortland in 1987.[5][7] While working as the director of intramural sports at Utica College, he earned his master's degree in education from Syracuse University's School of Education in 1993.[5][8]


Sankey began his career as the director of intramural sports at Utica College.[9] After completing a one-year internship at athletic department of Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana, Sankey was hired as the compliance director there. He also coached the university’s golf teams for two years and worked there until 1992.[10][11]

Sankey joined the Southland Conference in 1992, continuing work on compliance issues, ultimately becoming commissioner in 1996.[12]

In 2002, when the SEC was having compliance issues, then-commissioner Mike Slive hired Sankey as an associate commissioner. When Slive retired in 2015, Sankey was named the league's eighth commissioner.[11][12] During his tenure as commissioner, the SEC has expanded, adding Texas and Oklahoma to the conference in July 2021.[13]

Sankey in March 2024 raised controversy by suggesting the NCAA men's basketball postseason tournament get rid of automatic berths, thus limiting tournament appearance and financial windfall opportunities for smaller programs and conferences. Auburn and Kentucky were upset in the Round of 64, which didn't make Sankey's arguments legitimate. [14]

Personal life[edit]

Sankey married his wife Cathy in November 1988 in New York.[6] They reside in Birmingham, Alabama and have two adult daughters, one of whom went to a SEC school at Mississippi State University.[15] Sankey is an avid marathoner and has run 41 marathons.[16]


  1. ^ "SEC Extends Contract of Commissioner Greg Sankey to 2026". Southeastern Conference. Retrieved August 5, 2021. Sankey, 57, was appointed Commissioner...
  2. ^ Blinder, Alan; Thames, Alanis (31 December 2021). "The Son of New York Who Runs the South's Most Envied Sports League". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 January 2022.
  3. ^ "Commissioner: GREG SANKEY". 2017. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  4. ^ Sciria, Chris (March 13, 2015). "Auburn native Greg Sankey accepts SEC challenge as new commissioner". Auburn Citizen. AP. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  5. ^ a b c Friedell, Dan (January 1, 2006). "From AHS to the SEC". Auburn Citizen. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  6. ^ a b Higgins, Ron (May 23, 2015). "New SEC commissioner Greg Sankey's exclusive Q and A". Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  7. ^ "Greg Sankey '87 has been named commissioner of the SEC". SUNY Cortland - Red Dragon Network. 2015. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  8. ^ Mink, Nate (13 March 2015). "Greg Sankey, who helped judge Syracuse in NCAA investigation, named new SEC commissioner". The Post-Standard. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  9. ^ "Journey pays off for new SEC commissioner Sankey". Tampa Bay Times. June 27, 2015. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  10. ^ "Demons Coast to Coast: Greg Sankey". Northwestern State University Athletics. July 3, 2020. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  11. ^ a b Solomon, Jon (March 15, 2015). "Texas, Oklahoma join SEC: Longhorns, Sooners accept invitations as Big 12 powers begin new wave of realignment". CBS Sports. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  12. ^ a b Ferrell, Scott (April 7, 2018). "Life is good for SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey". The Shreveport Times. Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  13. ^ Russo, Ralph D. (3 December 2021). "Power, influence growing for SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey". AP News. Retrieved 2 January 2022.
  14. ^ Thamel, Pete (March 15, 2024). "What will the future of the NCAA men's tournament look like? There's a lot at stake". ESPN. Retrieved 23 March 2024.
  15. ^ Knox, David (20 March 2015). "Brook Highland resident Sankey is new SEC commissioner". Retrieved 31 July 2021.
  16. ^ Williams, Natalie (13 March 2015). "10 things to know about new SEC commish Greg Sankey". Retrieved 31 July 2021.

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