Former KU athletic director in hospital after bicycle accident

Former Kansas University athletic director Bob Frederick remained in critical condition Friday afternoon at a Kansas City, Kan., hospital, where he was taken Thursday night after a bicycle accident at Sixth Street and Kasold Drive.

According to Lawrence Police Sgt. Mark Warren, Frederick, 69, of Lawrence, was riding north along Kasold Drive when he hit a pothole in the road. Witnesses said he flew over the handlebars of his bike and landed on Sixth Street. The accident occurred about 6:45 p.m.

Frederick was flown to Kansas University Hospital, where he underwent surgery Thursday night. About 1 p.m. Friday, he remained in critical condition, according to Kelly Hale, who is serving as a spokesman for the Frederick family.

“The family appreciates the thoughts and prayers that everyone is sending to them,” Hale said

A person bicycling with Frederick at the time was not injured.

Frederick is an experienced bicyclist, having competed in 2005 in an endurance event in California as well as in triathlons.

Unfortunately, Frederick also has experience with serious accidents while bicycling. Fifteen years ago, on June 18, 1994, Frederick was riding near Clinton Lake when his bike tire went off the roadway and he tumbled down a hill and landed on large rocks at the bottom of the Clinton Dam.

Frederick suffered three broken ribs, a punctured lung, a broken scapula and a concussion, but doctors said he likely would have been killed if he had not been wearing a helmet. He has been an advocate for helmet use ever since.

Frederick also broke a collarbone in a 1988 bicycle accident.

Career at KU

Frederick was KU’s athletic director from 1987-2001 and served as chairman of the NCAA men’s basketball selection committee in 1995 and 1996.

He was the athletic director who hired then-unheralded North Carolina assistant basketball coach Roy Williams as Larry Brown’s replacement as head coach at KU.

Under the direction of Frederick, Kansas won 32 conference championships in various sports and a national title in men’s basketball, and produced 41 academic All-Americans.

His 14 years marks the second-longest tenure of any Kansas A.D., behind F.C. “Phog” Allen’s 19 years.

Frederick oversaw more than $50 million in facilities upgrades in his final 10 years, including a $35 million renovation of Memorial Stadium and Allen Fieldhouse.

On Frederick’s watch, KU won the 1988 NCAA men’s basketball championship and, in 1992-93, became the first school ever to win a football bowl game, reach the men’s basketball Final Four and advance to the baseball College World Series in the same school year.

He resigned from his athletic director post in 2001. Presently, he teaches classes in KU’s sports management program.

Frederick is also a former KU basketball player and assistant coach. He coached at Rich Central High School in Illinois, Russell High School and Lawrence High School. He was an assistant coach at Brigham Young University and Stanford University. He also has served as Williams Fund director at KU and athletic director at Illinois State.