Baylor Law Professor Mike Rogers is best known now for his work in college athletics, particularly his role as chairman of the NCAA Amateurism Cabinet. But it wasn't always that way. At the age of 29, Rogers was a founding partner of Gaar & Bell (now Gilmore & Bell), a prominent securities transactions firm with offices in Kansas City, Mo.; Wichita, Kan.; and St. Louis, Mo. Within three years of its formation, Gaar & Bell was recognized by The American Lawyer as one of the outstanding specialty firms in the United States. Rogers served as lead counsel in dozens of private securities transactions and more than 100 public offerings of tax advantaged securities.
Rogers joined the Baylor Law School faculty in 1984 and became the architect of Baylor Law's alternative dispute resolution program. He has taught more law school offerings of the course "Alternative Dispute Resolution" than anyone else in the U.S. He is an accomplished arbitrator and mediator who has successfully resolved scores of lawsuits. He is a director of the McLennan County Dispute Resolution Center, serving as chairman of the board in 2000-2001. He also is on the panel of mediators for the United States District Court, Western District of Texas, and is a former director of the A.A. White Institute in Houston and formerly served on the panel of arbitrators for the American Arbitration Association. He also has served as consulting counsel in numerous securities lawsuits while teaching Securities Regulation at Baylor Law School.
"Teaching is in my genes," Rogers said. "I come from a family of teachers and coaches. As to working with bright law students, there isn't a better way to spend a lifetime."
For more than two decades, Rogers has served as chair of Baylor's Professional Sports Counseling Panel. In this capacity, he has rendered advice to numerous future pro athletes, including Olympic gold medalist Michael Johnson and Super Bowl champion Santana Dotson. More recently, he assisted Jason Smith, the second overall draft pick in the 2009 NFL Draft.
He comes by his work in athletics naturally. Rogers is the son of former Texas A&M basketball coach Bob Rogers, and he played basketball for Texas Tech University, where he is a member of the Double T Association. While at Tech, he was admitted to membership in Phi Eta Sigma, Beta Gamma Sigma and Phi Kappa Phi. In 1974, he received his juris doctor from the University of Oklahoma, where he was an editor of the Oklahoma Law Review and was admitted to membership in Order of the Coif.
Baylor University, the Big 12 Conference and the NCAA has learned to rely on Rogers. He is Baylor's Faculty Athletics Representative to the NCAA and the Big 12. He also served as Big 12 Conference Representative on the NCAA Division I Academic/Eligibility/Compliance Cabinet and chair of the Agents and Amateurism Subcommittee (2005-2008). In 2008, the NCAA Board of Directors appointed him chair of the newly created Division I Amateurism Cabinet. He also is a member of the Division I Communication and Coordination Committee, which helps coordinate consideration of issues and legislative concepts within the governance structure.
"I am very comfortable with my role as Faculty Athletics Representative and being an active participant in the NCAA Governance Structure," Rogers said. "As the son of a former head coach, a former student-athlete, a lawyer and a mediator, I speak all of the languages and bring a number of perspectives to the table. Also, it is important to give something back. Participation in athletics paid my way through college."
Rogers frequently writes and speaks on sports law topics. Recently, he was a panelist at the NAAC, NACDA, FARA and NCAA Conventions. He has appeared on ESPN's E:60 and has been interviewed by Sports Illustrated, ESPN College Sports and other leading sports periodicals. His scholarly work involving athletics includes publications "The Uniform Athlete Agent Act Fails to Fully Protect the College Athlete Who Exhausts His Eligibility Before Turning Professional" in Virginia Sports and Entertainment Law Journal 63 (2002), "Investigations-Act Before the Wolves Howl" in NCAA News (Oct. 23, 2006) and with co-author Rory Ryan, also a Baylor Law professor, "Navigating the Bylaw Maze in NCAA Major Infractions Cases in 37 Seton Hall Law Review 749 (2007).
Rogers is a former director of the McLennan County Bar and has been elected a Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation.