SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Longtime Slippery Rock University Sports Information Director Bob McComas will be honored in a pregame ceremony before The Rock takes on Seton Hill in baseball action April 12 at Jack Critchfield Park. First pitch is set for 1 p.m., with a brief ceremony honoring McComas scheduled for 12:45 p.m.
McComas, affectionately known by friends as "Bobby Mac," announced last month he would be leaving his SRU position May 30 to continue his passionate as a member of the Lions Club in a more significant role. A four-year cabinet member and three-year president of the Slippery Rock Lions Club, McComas will be relocating to Harrisburg in June to take over as state administrator for Lions of Pennsylvania.
He will oversee more than 21,000 Lions Club members throughout Pennsylvania and will be responsible for making sure each of the 1,000 Lions Club chapters in the state pay their dues on time and adhere to the policies and procedures set forth by Lions Club International, which is the largest service organization in the world with more than 1.35 million members.
McComas will also be in charge of planning and implementing a state convention every May, organizing a breakfast and hospitality room at the international convention and hosting quarterly meetings for the 18 district governors each year.
In his tenure with the local Lions Club, McComas served as president for the 50th anniversary celebration and doubled the organization's membership. He has been honored with three citations from the Lions Club International.
In addition to his work with the Slippery Rock Lion's Club, McComas also served four years as a membership chairman for the five-county district, three years as the district's campus club coordinator, two years as the northern Butler County zone chairman and one year each as the district newsletter editor and public relations chairman.
He is also one of the founding fathers of the Slippery Rock University Campus Lions Club, which has been in existence for the last three years and currently has 34 members.
The Lions Club runs deep in the McComas family and it's only fitting he is following in the footsteps of his father. He credits "Big Mac" for giving him his start in "Lionism" after his father received a life membership from his local club and advanced to the level of district governor in charge of six counties in Ohio.
The 2013-14 academic year marks the 14th for McComas as sports information director and a member of the University Public Relations Office staff at SRU. He came to SRU in July 2000 after serving 15 years as a sports writer and assistant sports editor at The Bradenton Herald in Florida.
This has been the second stint in sports information for McComas at SRU. He served as the sports information graduate assistant under the legendary John Carpenter from 1980-82. He received a master of science degree in recreation from SRU and was chosen as the department's Outstanding Graduate Student in 1982. McComas began his education at the University of Akron, where he received a bachelor of arts degree in mass media communication in 1981.
The Sports Information Office has made great strides under McComas, perhaps none more important that the enhancement of the official website for SRU Rock athletics, www.RockAthletics.com, which has grown during his tenure to include significant amounts of current and historical data.
"Slippery Rock University is losing an ambassador of sports, a great colleague and a close friend," said Rock head baseball coach Jeff Messer. "I'm glad we're going to be using one of our baseball games to honor him and thank him for all his efforts."
"I really appreciate all the work Bob has done through the years for all of the sports at Slippery Rock University," said head volleyball coach Laurie Lokash. "In addition to covering the teams, he also helped coaches connect with the local community through the Wednesday night Rock coaches show that used to be hosted at the Texas Roadhouse in Butler. With regard to volleyball, Bob was especially instrumental in helping us with our Dig For the Cure match. Any type of cancer was a cause that was very special to him so he helped us actively recruit sponsors and raise funds. We will miss those extra special touches and he will be greatly missed at The Rock."
In addition to his efforts in covering SRU athletics, McComas was also very active in the College Sports Information Directors of America and the Division II Sports Information Directors Association, serving since 2006 as a regional representative for D2SIDA. He also served 10 years as the Division II representative for the National Collegiate Baseball Writer's Association board of directors and served seven years as the Gene Upshaw Outstanding Lineman of the Year coordinator for Division II football.
McComas will continue his duties at The Rock through May, including working as a volunteer at the annual spring commencement exercises for the class of 2014.
Slippery Rock University is Pennsylvania's premier public residential university. Slippery Rock University provides students with a comprehensive learning experience that intentionally combines academic instruction with enhanced educational and learning opportunities that make a positive difference in their lives.