Dr. Darin White is part of the new contingent of academia attempting to improve the sports business acumen available in sports management programs, starting with his own program at Samford University's Brock School of Business. White doesn't just stop there, also chairing the Sports Marketing Academic Society, as part of the American Marketing Association. The goal is to develop a framework that builds the best graduating student who is prepared to meet the challenges of today's professional sports franchises and athletic departments worldwide. White discusses how he arranges his curriculum with the help of various sports business leaders, as well as lays out the facts to any would-be student seeking to gain employment in sports. Twitter: @Sports_Biz_Prof
Mike Hermann has served as an athletic director at three different institutions, twice at the Division I level. Now at the NAIA level, Hermann feels he has found his wheelhouse, in helping promote student athlete and fundraising success to a core constituency. While some administrators may avoid NAIA or small college athletics, Hermann advocates for the opposite approach, suggesting that some of the best principles of collegiate athletics are at the non-Division I level. Hermann shares his views on developing great alumni relations, and how to ensure that the athletic department has continuing transparency throughout the campus community. Twitter: @Hermann_sports
Athletic administrators typically don't drop down from FBS Division I to work at two different NCAA Division II institutions as athletic directors, but that's exactly what Tim Duncan has done (no, not THAT Tim Duncan). First at Paine College, now at Clayton State. But Duncan's story is much richer than that, working at two different FBS institutions as part of the senior staff in development, as well as his time in Corporate America, both as a businessman and entrepreneur. Duncan discusses his journey, as well as how he continues to strive to grow each department's revenue opportunities by engaging community members with a business mentality usually unseen by campus administrators. And he discusses why it's okay to have the same name as someone who is much more famous, especially when he lists the alternatives available. Twitter: @TimDuncanAD
Jean Gee represents one of the quintessential women's administrators in college athletics. In her 18 years at the University of Montana, Gee has risen from an assistant athletic director of compliance to a senior woman's administator, as well as serving as interim athletic director. Gee pulls no punches, especially when covering her thoughts on why there aren't as many women serving as athletic directors, along with the public perception against the reality of NCAA compliance standards. Gee also mentions a brief blimp of history of UM, both following the firing of the athletic director and football coach, as well as how a 2010 incident created the "most hated man in montana" legacy.
With 400 episodes of the Tao of Sports in the books, its only fitting to have on Brian Wickstrom, who is quickly gaining a leadership factor in the NCAA after his second athletic director stint at a Division-I institution. Wickstrom discusses his motivation and goals when coming into a new situation, how to handle both legacy employees as well as new ones, and ways to ensure that he is doing due-diligence by the institution in his decisions. Wickstrom covers the new challenges of revenue generation that athletic directors have had to face for the first time ever in that seat, as well as some of the ways to ensure career growth for the department's employees. Twitter: @ULM_AD
For 12 years, Jim Abbott has been leading Oklahoma City University's athletic department at the NAIA level. But he will be the first remind you that the letters NAIA or NCAA don't matter when it comes to whether Oklahoma City University is providing the best student-athlete experience in the country. Abbott's philosophy also extends to how he hires staff, including coaches, and he shares his vision of trying to teach fundraising as well as commitment to the athletic department to new employees. Abbott also talks about College Resource Management which offers up sessions designed to help athletic administrators at the small college level as well as #scachat, which is a Twitter chat aimed at creating a dialogue for athletic administration. Twitter: @jimabbott33
Ryan Ivey represents some of the new ways that a modern college athletic director can reach out to the public, as well as grow their networking capabilities through social media. Ivey hosts his own Twitter chat #scachat on Sunday nights, bringing together small college administrator issues and people together to discuss the pending challenges in the small college field today. Ivey shares his thoughts on hiring, firing and how to create a long-standing vision for an athletic department. Ivey also talks about his decision to be a NACMA board member, rather than just be a NACDA member like the majority of his athletic director colleagues in the field. Twitter: @RIvey35
Derek Van Der Merwe represents one of the truest forms of the NCAA spirit. A former walk-on at Central Michigan who became a scholarship athlete, Van Der Merwe stayed at CMU in various roles over 17 years, eventually rising to Deputy Director, before deciding to challenge himself with the Athletic Director position at Austin Peay. Van Der Merwe shares his insights on what long-term stability in one career can help and harm during an interview search, as well as his thoughts on hiring young professionals looking to break into the field. Van Der Merwe also discusses the recent Power 5 autonomy vote, as well as whether it may cause some schools to lose their way in college athletics by virtue of pursuing big time dollars. Twitter: @AustinPeayAD
Devin Crosby is preaching the gospel of EQ (Emotional Intelligence) in college athletics. Crosby was a previous guest on the podcast where he briefly discussed EQ, but now, meeting him at NACDA 14 in Orlando, it presented a great opportunity to go into an expansive amount of information on the EQ movement as well as his growth in college athletics at Kent State. Crosby presents an opportunity for all supervisors as well as employees to better understand each other, without fear, in the college athletic space. Twitter: @DevinlCrosby
Kevin Hatcher represents the epitome of NCAA Division II athletics, discussing how different the scene looks compared to the Division I days. Hatcher talks about the responsibilities, as well as smaller staff and budget, that make up the realities of CSSB and its sister Division II schools in the conference. Hatcher discusses coming into the environment, understanding how to shift the culture, and why it may be necessary to move staff when they do not fit into the system. Hatcher broadens the scope by illustrating why a jump to Division I athletics is not a certainty, even when an athletic department such as CSSB wins on the court.