Supervising the steady growth and balanced development of one of the nation's top athletic programs is the Herculean task being carried out successfully by Bernie A. Shively.
Few who have observed the untiring efforts of the tall, silver-haired former All-America footballer in the service of the University of Kentucky since 1927 and as Director of Athletics since 1938 will argue his fitness as an athletic Hercules. Not only has Shively guided the development of Kentucky as a nationally-respected power in major sports, but he has also gained personal prestige through a fair-minded approach to many problems.
During his more than quarter-century tenure as Athletic Director, Shively has directly supervised major expansions in Kentucky's athletic plant resulting from the progression of the school's football and basketball teams to greater national prominence and increased patronage by the sports-minded public.
The seating capacity of Kentucky's football stadium, McLean Stadium on Stoll Field, has been doubled to bring the current number of seats to approximately 37,500 and on par with most other schools located in heavier-populated areas. Powerful lighting equipment also was installed during the 1948-49 construction and a new-type "iodized" light put up in 1961 to bring night football into new popularity. Partly to satisfy the overwhelming number of basketball devotees, who could not squeeze into the 2,800-seat Alumni Gymnasium, a long-planned Memorial Coliseum was completed in 1950. Seating 11,500 persons for cage contests, the four-million dollar Coliseum also houses the Athletic Department. More recently, Shively directed the acquisition of a pair of modern, ranch-style living units which have served as the home of the football team since 1954. "Wildcat Manor" and "Kitten Lodge" replace three frame houses which the gridders had occupied since 1949.
Plans Spacious New Sports Center
A large dressing room building and football practice field, used since 1955, was abandoned in 1959 to make way for a huge new men's dorm. Under Shively's supervision, a spacious new Sports Center was prepared a short distance away on the University farm to take even better care of the footballers and spring sports teams. The Sports Center is generally regarded as one of the finest sports facilities in the nation.
Stoll Field recently underwent, with Shively's supervision, a major "face-lifting" to improve its playing surface and the view of the fans sitting in the lower rows of the stands.
Born in Oliver, III., May 26, 1903, Shively attended Paris (III.) High school and there began his athletic career by participating in track and football. Although he was considered an outstanding backfield man in high school, Shively didn't attract the serious attention of collegiate scouts. He entered Illinois and tried out for the football team on his own. From that humble beginning, Shively went on to become a great guard under Coach Bob Zuppke on the same lllini am made famous by the immortal Red Grange.
Shive played two years with Grange, running interference for the "Galloping Ghost" and made All-America in 1926 as a senior despite a bad knee that handicapped his playing. He also won the heavyweight wrestling championship of the Big 10 and was a standout in track to rank as one of the finest all-around athletes in Illinois' history.
Shively came to Kentucky in 1927 as line coach of football under Harry Gam-mage and six years later was named head of the UK Physical Education Department. He succeeded Chet Wynne as Athletic Director in 1938. During this period and the years following, he also served as track and baseball coach for several seasons and