Is SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey next in the WWE ring?

Nick Kelly
The Tuscaloosa News

SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey received an unusual gift one day in the mail — A WWE belt. 

He had been sent a package with a belt from Nick Khan, the former CAA agent who became WWE's president. And it wasn't just any WWE belt. On one side, it had the SEC logo. On the other side, the belt says "The Commish." 

And yes, he has worn it around the office before. 

"It's legit," Sankey said while speaking at the Associated Press Sports Editors Southeast region meeting Monday. "I don’t know what they do for the ones in the ring. I’ve not been in the ring before, but it’s real. It’s heavy and got the buckle and the label just like they do for the WWE one." 

He's got the belt, but would he actually step into the ring if invited?

"Yeah, I would go," Sankey said. 

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It wouldn't be the first time he would be close to the ring. In 1990, he was living in Utica, New York, and he was commuting to Syracuse every day for graduate classes. His final year, he had a statistics class. 

"It was just boring," Sankey said.

He had a choice: Go to statistics class or instead attend what was then called WWF. 

"We skipped statistics class and went to the wrestling show," Sankey said. "Every time I was on this call (recently) talking about statistical analysis, I said, 'I think that's the class I skipped to go to the wrestling thing at War Memorial.' That's probably the closest I'm going to get to the ring." 

Sankey has been twice; the other time, he attended a couple years before with his younger brother. He remembered standing outside the exit to see all of the wrestlers leave. 

"I was more frightened there then I had been in a while because those are big human beings," Sankey said, "and they stayed in character all the way to the bus.”

As perhaps the most powerful conference commissioner, Sankey has a few other more pressing issues to focus his attention on such as Name, Image and Likeness and the transfer portal. 

But maybe, just maybe, Sankey will find his way back to a WWE match. Perhaps he might step into the ring, too.  

Nick Kelly covers Alabama football and men's basketball for The Tuscaloosa News, part of the USA TODAY Network. Reach him at nkelly@gannett.com or follow him on Twitter: @_NickKelly