Athletic Director Mike Roth announces retirement after nearly 40 years with the Zags

Mike Roth
Credit: Gonzaga Athletics

SPOKANE, Wash. — Gonzaga Athletic Director Mike Roth has announced his retirement. 

Roth, a Moses Lake native, has held his current position for 24 seasons, but has been with Gonzaga Athletics for nearly 40 years. He first served as an assistant men’s basketball coach in the early 80s and then moved into an assistant director role in 1987.

“I have been blessed to be able to serve Gonzaga as the AD for all these years,” Roth said. “I am beyond grateful to everyone that has been a part of my experience here at Gonzaga, there’s far too many to thank and name at this time. I do want to single out Dr. Thayne McCulloh, and thank him for all his support and making this all possible.”

Under Roth’s direction, Gonzaga’s sports teams have flourished, from the men’s and women’s basketball teams, to the Zags baseball and rowing teams. 

Roth elevated then-assistant basketball coach Mark Few to head men’s basketball coach during the 1999-2000 season. Since then, Few has become the winningest active coach in the nation, with his team making several Sweet 16, Elite 8, Final Four and now two National Championship appearances.

“It has been an incredible blessing and rewarding 24 years of having Mike Roth as our Director of Athletics,” Gonzaga Men’s Basketball Head Coach Mark Few said. “Without Mike, this entire era of growth and success never would have occurred. It has been a great partnership and one I feel so lucky to have been part of.”

Beyond the success of Gonzaga’s athletic teams, Roth has also overseen upgrades of multiple facilities during his time with the Zags. Roth was there when the university broke ground on the Kermit Rudolf Fitness Center, Harry A. Green Indoor Rowing Facility, Luger Field, Patterson Baseball Complex, Diedrick/DeLong Athletic Training Center and the Volkar Center for Athletic Achievement. 

Roth will stay in his role through the summer, with his retirement set for August.