COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Jim Jones, a former academic assistant to football coaching great Woody Hayes who went on to serve as Ohio State athletic director in the 1980s and ’90s, has died. He was 83.

Jones died Wednesday in Bonita Springs, Florida, of natural causes, the university said.

Jones started at Ohio State as a physical education instructor in 1965 and moved to the athletic department in 1967. He served as academic adviser, mainly to the football team. for four years and often was referred to by Hayes as the team’s “brain coach.” He then moved to athletic department administration and was athletic director from 1987 until his retirement in 1994.

“He had a commitment to diversity and made a tremendous contribution to the growth of Ohio State athletics,” current athletic director Gene Smith said.

Jones was a past president of the national athletic directors association and served on many national committees at the Big Ten Conference and national levels, including the NCAA’s special events and post-season bowls committees, the Big Ten promotions and PR committee, and the Rose Bowl management committee.

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