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Volume 24 No. 155
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Bud Selig Addresses His MLB Tenure, Life After Baseball

Selig plans to write book, teach
at Wisconsin following retirement
Instead of "entering a life of peaceful contemplation" when he retires as MLB Commissioner at the end of '12, Bud Selig will take up office at the Univ. of Wisconsin, his alma mater, and "add an extra inning (or two or three) to a career that has spanned auto sales, sports franchise ownership, and serving as grand poobah of America’s national pastime," according to John Allen of ON WISCONSIN. After the '10 World Series, Selig sat with the UW alumni magazine for an extensive interview about "his past and future." The following is a portion of the Q&A.

Q: You’ll have served twenty years as commissioner in 2012, and then you’re going to retire, right?
Selig: I am. Now, there are many people who don’t believe that, including my wife and family and most owners. They don’t think I am, but I intend to spend a lot of my time in Madison. … I’ll have done this job twenty years, and anybody who understands this job (knows) that’s a long time -- other than Kennesaw Mountain Landis, (I’ll have done it) longer than anybody else.

Q: What will you do in Madison?
Selig: I plan to write a book and teach -- sports in modern society, maybe 1960 to the present, from the time I’ve done it or even before. Sports have played a very dynamic role in society, transcending just the sport itself, and that’s what I’d like to teach.

Q: What do you consider the greatest legacies of your term?
Selig: Changing the economic structure of the sport. In the ’90s, with all the heartache (of the 1994 players’ strike and canceled World Series), there wasn’t a nickel of revenue sharing. This year there’ll be $450 million. … When I took over, the gross revenue of the sport was $1.2 billion. This year it’s $7 billion. ... We’ve now had sixteen years of labor peace. Nobody at the time thought that was possible. It may be the most important single reason why this sport is in its golden era, doing better than anybody dreamed.

Q: What issues will your successor face?
Selig: We need to grow. The sport has tremendous potential for international growth. And just to keep us moving in the direction we’ve been moving in the last five years. ... I think this sport is so woven into society and so popular today that I’m not worried about being threatened. I’m just worried about continuing growth (ON WISCONSIN, Spring '11 issue).