Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 2/22/12

Michigan State Athletic Director Mark Hollis who is credited with developing some of college basketball’s most innovative events, has been named to the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee. He will begin serving his term September 1, 2012.

Hollis earned his undergraduate degree from Michigan State University in 1985, serving as student manager for the Spartan men’s basketball team under legendary coach Jud Heathcote. The predecessor to Tom Izzo. He earned a Master’s degree from the University of Colorado in 1992 and then joined the staff at the Western Athletic Conference, working his way up from administrative assistant to assistant to the commissioner and then assistant commissioner.

From there, he spent two years as assistant and associate athletic director at the University of Pittsburgh before returning to Michigan State in 1995. As senior associate athletics director, Hollis oversaw all external operations. He also had sports management supervision of the men’s basketball program while also supervising the cheerleading, dance teams and band programs.

Hollis is credited with conceptualizing the “BasketBowl,” establishing a then-world record crowd of 78,129 who witnessed a 2003 game between the Spartans and the University of Kentucky at Detroit’s Ford Field. The concept, which involves placing the court in the center of the stadium, has been used at the past three Final Fours. It was also Hollis’ vision that led to Michigan State playing the University of North Carolina in November in the first basketball game to be played on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier.

His next vision: Spartans vs. Trojans at Olympia! Or Sparta itself! Yes MSU vs. USC basketball in Greece.

During Hollis’ tenure, the Spartans have appeared in 14 consecutive NCAA tournaments, including six Final Fours. He is chair of the Division I Amateurism Cabinet and a member of the NCAA’s Men’s Basketball Issues Committee.

Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports

A Fulbright scholar and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; and he’s a member of the Football Writers Association of America, U.S. Basketball Writers Association, and Society of Professional Journalists. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should too.

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