Christian Spears
Christian Spears

Deputy Director of Athletics


NIU Honored at Sports Video Group's College Sports Summit

The university earned top honors in the Collegiate Athletics Special Feature category


Spears named NIU acting director of Athletics

Deputy director of Athletics has overseen rise in NIU APR, GSR numbers


NIU's Spears Takes Over as President of NAAC

Senior to lead the organization in 2012-13

Christian Spears has served at NIU since April 2009 and this marks his 17th year in NCAA athletic administration. Spears' responsibilities at NIU include serving as the primary liaison between several campus units and Intercollegiate Athletics, including Academic Affairs and Student Affairs as well as the Office of General Counsel.

Additionally, Spears directly supervises the following administrative areas for NIU: Academics, Compliance, Life Skills, Strength and Conditioning, Sport Psychology, Football Operations and Equipment. Moreover, he coordinates the department's Academic Progress Rate (APR) and Graduation Success Rate (GSR). He is also the Sport AD for Football, Men's Basketball, Baseball, Cross-Country and Track and Field.

Prior to joining NIU, Spears served for six years at Southern Illinois University, where he was the Assistant Athletic Director. During his time at SIU, Spears managed the Saluki Athletic Compliance Office and the athletic financial aid office. He was also the sport administrative liaison for Men's and Women's Track and Field and Cross-Country.

Spears came to SIU in fall of 2003 from Harvard University where he was Assistant Director for Athletic Compliance. In that role, he assessed initial and continuing eligibility for 2,000 prospective and enrolled student-athletes and he monitored the academic progress of student-athletes and participated as a non-resident academic advisor. Moreover, he worked with Director of Athletics managing the academic/admission index for all entering student-athletes.

Spears began his career as a graduate student working in the athletic marketing office at Long Beach State University; he then served as the Big Ten Minority Intern for Ohio State University working in their athletic compliance office while he matriculated through the Moritz College of Law at Ohio State.

Spears is a graduate of the University of Washington, where he majored in political science. He obtained a Master's Degree in Public Administration from Long Beach State University in 1998 and he received his Juris Doctorate from The Ohio State University, Moritz College of Law in 2002.

In the spring of 2009, Spears began a four-year term on the National Association for Athletics Compliance (NAAC) Board of Directors and he serves as the Past President of NAAC.

Christian and his wife, Julia, reside in Sycamore, Illinois with their sons, Rainier and Kai and their daughter Skyla.

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