|William Frack, middle,
being introduced before the start of the men’s basketball game against Ohio University Wednesday evening
at Anderson Arena. (Photo: Andrew Weber/Sentinel-Tribune)
For more than six decades, coaches, players and administrators with the men’s basketball program at
Bowling Green State University made Bill Frack feel welcome. PHOTO GALLERY
The lifelong Findlay resident has financially supported the athletic department, including a major
leadership donation to the Stroh Center, the new basketball venue for the Falcon men and women, which
will open next season. The court in the Stroh Center is named in Frack’s honor.
Now, the 75-year-old Frack has taken a major step to strengthen the BG men’s basketball team for the
Frack’s gift of a $10 million endowment for men’s basketball was announced prior to the Falcons’ home
game with Ohio University on Wednesday. Frack was recognized on the court before the start of the game.
“Now I can help and maybe after I’m gone they will get back to being a national power again,” Frack said.
“I don’t think we’re that far. We just need more help.
“Coaches, players, administrators, even before I gave them money, they were nice to me when they didn’t
have to be … If they would have been anything else, I probably would have looked for another school.”
The endowment is a series of irrevocable trusts which will be available after Frack’s death. It is the
largest, single private gift in Bowling Green’s history. It is also the largest one-time gift ever
designated to a Mid-American Conference basketball program.
“You’re going to have to wait until I’m gone, you’re not going to have the money yet. Don’t get your
hopes up, it’s not going to happen tomorrow,” Frack said with a laugh.
“It’s going to help the whole university and the whole athletic department,” Frack added. “It’s going to
draw attention, eventually, all over the country.”
A William D. Frack Division I Men’s Basketball Endowment Fund is being created this spring with the
Bowling Green State University Foundation. The annual earnings will be used to enhance the men’s
basketball program’s budget. It will not supplement any of the already designated budget for the
The new money will be used to supplement the salaries of the coaching staff; allow BG to host more games
against bigger-name opponents; and support the student-athletes overall academic and player development.
“It’s not too often in life that you have the opportunity to or the means to do something that is
transformational and that is absolutely what has happened here today,” said Greg Christopher, BG’s
athletics director. “It’s going to take this program to the next level.
“I’m the one sitting here that’s going to take a couple of questions, but this is much more about the
people, the players, the coaches and the staff that over the last six decades that have made Bill part
of the BGSU basketball family,” Christopher continued. “This endowment is going to help generations of
players to come, but it’s also about the generations of players before.”
Frack’s love affair with BG basketball started as an eighth grader in 1948 in the Men’s Gym, now Eppler
South. His father brought him to games and he has seen many of the top victories and all of the best
players in the last 60-plus years in both the Men’s Gym and Anderson Arena.
“He said they have great basketball at Bowling Green University and we are going to go to some games,”
Frack said about his father. “Just about every week there was a top national college coming in and I
just got hooked.”
Frack did attend BGSU as a student, but graduated from Findlay College and was a long-time teacher of
English, government and political science in Hardin County.
“I never got Bowling Green out of my system,” Frack said.
It was through some good results with stocks, bonds, and other investments, that Frack was able to
accumulate the money for the endowment.
“Fortunately I managed my finances and I got to the point that I can do this,” Frack said. “I’m a buy and
hold (guy). You buy the ones that pay a dividend.”
Frack said once Kerm Stroh came forward to give $8 million to get the fund-raising for the new basketball
venue started, he knew he had to do something to help.
“I knew we were going to have a building when one guy could have the foresight or the guts or whatever to
see a building rising out of this empty field,” Frack said. “I knew we had to do something and I knew I
could help. I wasn’t sure how much I could help, but I wanted to help.
“Now all we need are some games to get people out there. We have had problems being able to make
guarantees and recruit players because we just haven’t had the funds,” Frack continued. “Coaches were
going out recruiting with one arm tied behind their back.”
BG head coach Louis Orr was appreciative of Frack’s gift.
“He not only talks about Bowling Green as being a big part of his passion and his life, but he shows it,”
Orr said. “And not just with his momentary gift.
“It was a big day for him and I’m happy for him, but In know what he probably enjoyed the most was
watching our guys play and play well (in a 73-61 win over Ohio).”