Gerald Gurney


Gerald Gurney, Ph.D., is an assistant professor of Adult and Higher Education at the University of Oklahoma (OU), where he teaches in the subject areas of athletics in higher education, athletics academic reform and ethics in athletics. He does research, writes and is a regular commentary contributor in a number of national higher education trade journals.

Gurney previously served as the senior associate athletics Director at the University of Oklahoma from 1993-2011. He was in charge of OU’s student life center, academic services and sports medicine. He oversaw a comprehensive athletics student life center with an annual operating budget of $3 million.

In June 2006, he received the Lan Hewlett Award from the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A). The award is considered the top honor in the profession.

In 2007, Gurney chaired a joint NCAA/N4A task force on consulting to select and train consultants to visit NCAA member institutions needing assistance with improvement on Academic Performance Program results and academic support program assessment for NCAA certification requirements.

The OU Athletics Department was awarded the prestigious 2007 PRISM Award for managerial excellence in student-athlete development and was cited for excellence in the creation of its Psychological Resources for OU Student-Athletes (PROS) in its academic services program. The department also was awarded the 2005 Innovations in Mental Health Award for psychological programs and services for student-athletes from the Mental Health Association for Oklahoma County. Oklahoma. In 2007, Gurney was recognized by the Oklahoma Psychological Association with a Distinguished Citizen citation.

In 2005, Gurney received the Outstanding Adjunct Professor of the Year award in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies for his outstanding teaching in the department. In 2006, he received the Distinguished Service Award for his efforts in implementing a master’s degree program emphasis in intercollegiate athletics administration.

Gurney graduated cum laude from The Ohio State University in 1973 with a degree in English education. He earned his master’s in student personnel work and counseling in 1976 from Ohio State and then received his Ph.D. from Iowa State University in higher education administration in 1980.

He began his career in athletics as an academic counselor at Iowa State. He left ISU to become assistant athletic director for academic affairs at SMU before serving as associate athletics director for academic support and compliance at the University of Maryland. Later, as assistant to the provost, his duties focused on campus retention efforts and undergraduate academic advising.

He has served on NCAA Certification teams which conduct peer reviews of institutional adherence to operating principles for governance, equity and academic integrity since 1993. He has been a member of the editorial review board for the International Journal of Sport Management since 1999. He and his wife, Debra Stuart, have a daughter, Rachel.

For a full curriculum vitae or list of publications, please contact Dr. Gurney at