USF President Judy Genshaft drew a standing ovation at memorial services for the late Lee Roy Selmon on Friday morning when she announced that USF would be renaming its main athletic center as the Lee Roy Selmon Athletic Center at USF.
Selmon, the Pro Football Hall of Famer and Bucs star who had worked at USF since 1993, serving as the Bulls' athletic director from 2001-04, died Sunday in Tampa, two days after he suffered a stroke. He was 56.
"He was truly a pillar of our university and our community. We can't imagine the campus without him," Genshaft said at Idlewild Baptist Church, where USF's football team watched from the choir area. "And that is why yesterday, the (USF) Board of Trustees unanimously approved my request to rename the USF athletic center (pausing for 30 seconds of applause) as the Lee Roy Selmon Athletic Center at the University of South Florida. And while he cannot know how we will fill the great void created by his loss, we know Lee Roy Selmon's legacy carries on at the University of South Florida. It lies in the young men and women who achieve more than they ever believed they could, not just on the field of play, but in life. It lives in his colleagues who are reminded the great measure of us as human beings is not what we achieve for ourselves, but what we do for others. He was a man of great dignity, great humility ... and we will miss him."
USF athletic director Doug Woolard, who was listed as a pallbearer for the Tampa services, thanked Genshaft and the board for "swiftly approving" the name change for USF's central athletic facility, built during Selmon's tenure as athletic director and opened in 2004.
"Lee Roy Selmon stands for everything we desire in our student-athletes: integrity, academic excellence, compassion and competitiveness," Woolard said during the services. "Beginning now and for perpetuity, our student-athletes will know the name on this building sets the standard they should constantly strive for."
USF announced Thursday several measures to pay tribute to Selmon -- athletes on all of USF's teams will wear an "LRS" patch on their uniforms during the 2011-12 school year, a No. 63 flag will be brought onto the field during Saturday's home opener against Ball State, and 40,000 "LRS 63" decals will be given to fans at Saturday's game.