Schembechler Hall displays the University’s rich football past and honors the great coach from which it gets its name. In addition to the vintage jerseys, helmets, and antique photos that line the walls, Schembechler Hall houses a living testament to Bo — Mary Passink, Bo’s long-time secretary.
Bo hired Passink as the Assistant Coach Secretary in 1979. She remained in that position until 1995 when she was promoted to her current position as the Senior Administrative Assistant to the Head Coach and Recruiting.
Passink mainly works with recruiting football players.
“I help out with coaches on the road, send out mailings to high school recruits, and plan their stay when they come to visit,” she said.
Passink also heads a group of student volunteer interns that help out on game days.
When meeting new athletes, Passink looks for specific characteristics that University players must embody.
“They have to love sports, be here for the right reasons, have good grades, and be dependable,” she said.
And meeting these students is exactly why Passink does what she does.
“My favorite part of the job,” Passink said, “is meeting student athletes as high school students and watching them leave with their diplomas.”
Passink has developed relationships with many of the players and loves to stay in touch with them after they leave, including those who continue playing in the NFL.
Another important relationship that Passink gained from her career was that with Bo Schembechler.
Not many people are pleased to hear their boss scream their name, but what Passink misses the most is when Bo would yell “Mary!” from his desk.
“Bo was a lot of fun. He was a great storyteller and had a great sense of humor. He never forgot a name — he had a great knack for that,” Passink recalled.
Their time working together created many cherished memories for Passink. So many that she could not single out her fondest.
“There’s so many,” she said. “Every day was just a great memory. There was always a smile on his face.”