General counsel and chief legal officer, Nike Inc.
The Beaverton, Ore.-based company controls 40 percent of the U.S. athletic shoe market and is the world’s No. 1 sporting goods manufacturer. Carter joined Nike five years ago and oversees the legal group for North and South America, which has 20 attorneys.
Whom do you root for? I went to Stanford, and Oregon for law. When they play each other, I think everyone’s a bit partial to their undergrad. And my daughter is at Stanford.
Your favorite March Madness memory? I took my son to see the games in Minneapolis a few years ago. He was 15, and meeting some of the present and past coaches was really fun for him.
Do you participate in a pool? I don’t [for the tournament], but sometimes I do a Final Four pool. I think maybe I won a women’s pool a few years ago.
Does it hurt the college game to have players enter the NBA draft early? I don’t know. My bias is, I would like to see kids take the time in college. [My] selfish interest would be to see kids who are great basketball players play in college. But I don’t know if it’s in their best interests.
General counsel, National Collegiate Athletic Association
The Indianapolis-based group monitors athletic programs at over 1,000 colleges and universities. Cole is its first general counsel and works with one other in-house attorney.
Whom do you root for? I vary depending on where I’m living, so now I follow Notre Dame and Indiana for men’s basketball, and Purdue for women’s.
Your favorite March Madness memory? [My first] Final Four, in Seattle, in 1989. I had just been hired as GC at the University of Michigan, and Michigan beat Seton Hall. It came down to the last free throw of the game.
Do you participate in a pool? We don’t do pools. I’ve seen so many sad stories about kids getting in over their heads [in gambling]. It isn’t something that’s fun for me.
Does it hurt the college game to have players enter the draft early? As the daughter of a college professor, I’m a firm believer in college education. I do see that sometimes economically, there’s no alternative [to turning pro, but college] enriches your whole life.