Monthly Feature: Get to Know... Michael Sheridan

July 1, 2024

For the first 30 years of his life, Mike Sheridan called Kansas City home. He grew up there, attended the University of Kansas and Washburn University School of Law. Although he hasn’t lived in Kansas City for more than a decade, he still calls KC home and visits a half dozen times a year.

“Kansas City is a great place.” Mike points to the food, live music and sports as a few of his favorite reasons why.

Since leaving Kansas City 15 years ago, Mike has settled in Indianapolis after taking a job at the NCAA where he spent more than eight years as an Assistant/Associate Director of Enforcement before joining Bond’s Collegiate Sports Practice Group.

While at the NCAA, Mike led NCAA investigations and built his professional network, including with Kyle Skillman and Rick Evrard, co-Chairs of Bond’s Collegiate Sports Practice. Mike’s work often involved Kyle and Rick, and when an opportunity came up in late 2020 to join them, Mike took advantage.

“It was a fairly smooth transition to firm life. I became comfortable very quickly. I’m thankful that Rick and Kyle had trust in me.” In January 2024, Mike was elected to membership in the firm.

In the 3-plus years Mike has been with Bond, there has been a lot of change in the industry. “In the time I’ve worked in college sports, there have been monumental changes, particularly on the rules pertaining to benefits and compensation available to athletes.”

“I think the mindset of most college sports fans has changed. Historically, fans didn’t like the idea of college athletes being paid but fans have stopped buying into the idea that a scholarship is adequate compensation for college athletes when they see the money that’s being generated. The money has grown so significantly that fans believe athletes should share in it.”

Mike believes deregulation will continue and lead to a more professionalized model in college sports at the highest levels. “We should also expect continued discussion on athlete employment, Title IX and other areas. A new model will emerge that is probably like what we see in pro sports.”

Mike always had an interest in the behind-the-scenes aspects of college sports, but his experience in law school and as a new attorney was on civil rights and criminal justice matters, which gave him valuable experience in the courtroom. However, after a few years, Mike realized that college sports is where he wanted to be, which led him to take a job at a university out east doing NCAA compliance. From there, he went onto the NCAA.

“I didn’t have a grand plan for getting into college sports that’s for sure. I took the long road to get here but gained some valuable skills and experience along the way. I wouldn’t change my path to but I probably wouldn’t recommend it, either. But thankfully it led me to the right place.”