The Ross Bjork era has officially begun. Gene Smith finished his tenure as the Athletic Director at The Ohio State University on June 30. Smith led OSU athletics for 19 years, starting in March 2005. On July 1, Ross Bjork officially stepped into the role.

Bjork comes from Texas A&M, where he served as the Athletic Director since 2019. The announcement of his new position was made in January. Even while fulfilling his duties in College Station, Bjork has been preparing for his new role in Columbus.

Bjork posted on X about his plans for Buckeye Nation as he takes over from Smith.

“As I get started on July 1, the only promises I will make will be based on three things: 1) I will work at my maximum effort every single day for you and our student-athletes. 2) I will carry myself with a positive attitude and humble confidence about who we are, what we stand for, and how we do it. 3) I will embrace and cherish our role in supporting our student-athletes while being a great steward of the treasured assets within Buckeye Athletics and Business Advancement.”

Ohio State Athletic Director Ross Bjork

Known for his fundraising skills, Bjork will focus on enhancing Ohio State’s name, image, and likeness (NIL) opportunities. This will help the university stay competitive in the evolving college sports landscape. Gene Smith has done an excellent job setting the stage for the new Athletic Director.

Bjork will be the ninth Athletic Director in Ohio State history and will manage the largest athletic budget in the nation. For many, his arrival is a welcome sight.