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Kenneth L. Shropshire to lead Arizona State’s new international sports program

Wharton Sports Business Initiative director will join the Pac-12 school in July

Kenneth L. Shropshire will become the first Adidas Distinguished Professor of Global Sport at Arizona State University, a newly endowed faculty position sponsored by the sports apparel conglomerate.

Shropshire, director of the Wharton Sports Business Initiative at the University of Pennsylvania, is known internationally for his expertise in sports, business, law and society. He will join the Pac-12 school on July 1 to design and lead its new international sports facility.

The institute is expected to be launched in the second half of 2017, and Shropshire will design, build and lead a new global sport institute as the center’s CEO.

“This innovative approach will use the unifying power of sport to make a positive impact in the world,” he said in an Arizona State news release.

For more than 30 years, Shropshire has been a professor at the Wharton School of Business and the Department of Africana Studies, as well as an attorney, author and consultant.

Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson led the charge to bring Shropshire to the school.

“I have known Ken since becoming teammates on the Stanford football team in 1973,” said Anderson, a former NFL executive. “His intelligence and tenacity for the tasks at hand have always been extraordinarily impressive. I have no doubt he will bring dynamic energy to this exciting initiative.”

Besides leading the new sports center, Shropshire will have faculty appointments at the W.P. Carey School of Business and the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication.

He will also be awarded affiliate faculty appointments at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law and the School of Social Transformation’s African and African-American Studies program.

“From podcasts and documentaries to hosting events globally, this presented an extraordinary opportunity to make the work going on in the academy more impactful by broadly disseminating it in journalistic form,” Shropshire said. “At this point in my career, my focus is to make a difference with sport. I cannot wait to get underway.”

Rhiannon Walker is an associate editor at The Undefeated. She is a drinker of Sassy Cow Creamery chocolate milk, an owner of an extensive Disney VHS collection, and she might have a heart attack if Frank Ocean doesn't drop his second album.