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Ohio State prez: Athletics is just one of many successes

Published: Wed, July 9, 2014 @ 6:36 p.m.

COLUMBUS (AP) — Ohio State hasn’t always gotten enough credit for the “98 percent” of what it does outside of athletics, the university’s new president said today as he pledged to raise all the features of the school’s profile.

Michael Drake, the former University of California-Irvine chancellor, said he would use Ohio State’s success in sports as a way to draw attention to what the university does well in other areas — from cancer research to the performing arts.

“We haven’t gotten as much credit or as much focus on some of the myriad other things we do, the other 98 percent of our enterprise,” Drake said in an interview with reporters in his campus office, its walls still bare after his arrival last week.

Drake, whose father played college football in the 1930s, said he isn’t talking about diminishing what the university does athletically.

“I plan on doing everything we can to do even better on the athletics side, but to make sure that people have a chance to pay attention to the other things that we’re doing as well, and to continue to strengthen those,” he said.

Drake, 63, an ophthalmologist, was chosen as Ohio State’s 15th president and first black leader in January, ending a seven-month search. He replaces Gordon Gee, who retired last year after remarks he made jabbing Roman Catholics and Southeastern Conference schools became public.

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