Fighting Hawks – the safe, unimaginative, generic, dark horse nickname that finds itself a front runner

UND’s nickname committee has submitted five finalists, from thousands of initial submissions, to President Kelley for consideration for UND’s new nickname.

The final five are:

  • Fighting Hawks
  • Nodaks
  • North Stars
  • Roughriders
  • Sundogs

North Stars, Roughriders, and Sundogs have been fiercely debated around water coolers, in the forums, and across social media. Each stirs up strong passions, both for and against, and each were favorites to make the finals. Nodaks is in a class of its own–no one seems to love it, but it was often assumed to be likely to advance thanks to its strong regionality in playing on the state name (which was, itself, a contender until last night). Until last night’s cut, however, Fighting Hawks was a dark horse that was generally just discussed under the umbrella of “one of those hawk names”; no one seemed to have much to say for or against it, and there was certainly little passion around it.

It’s not hard to see how Fighting Hawks made the cut, with its nod to history with “Fighting” and a fierce and strong animal in Hawks. With the three controversial contenders (North Stars, Roughriders, and Sundogs) having been bruised in months of debate, Fighting Hawks and its lack of baggage suddenly seems to be the safe choice.

However, Fighting Hawks is also remarkably unoriginal.

A post on the SiouxSports Forum observed that 9 other schools have moved from Indian nicknames to some variation of Hawks, most in the last 15 years. Those are:

  • Chowam Hawks – formerly Braves (2006)
  • Dickinson State Blue Hawks – formerly Savages (1972)
  • IUP Crimson Hawks – formerly Indians (2006)
  • Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks – formerly Indians (2006)
  • Miami RedHawks – formerly Redskins (1997)
  • Ripon Red Hawks – formerly Redmen (1985)
  • Southeast Missouri State Redhawks – formerly Indians and Otahkians (2005)
  • Seattle Redhawks – formerly Chieftains (2000)
  • Stonehill Skyhawks – formerly Chieftains (2005)

The post also noted that some variation on Hawks is used by 28 other 4-year schools, making it the 8th most popular sports team nickname.

Fighting Hawks might well ride its lack of controversy to being the chosen name (for many of the same reasons 9 other schools chose it when migrating from Indian nicknames). It would probably be palatable by about as many constituents as any of the other names, but without the vitriolic opposition the more controversial contenders have.

But, it would shift UND from having had an original, regional, and proud nickname that itself stirs emotions to a pretty generic nickname, chosen because it’s acceptable and teams need to have nicknames. It’s not particularly unique, and doesn’t particularly identify with the school or region. While it doesn’t stir up passionate opposition, it also lacks passionate support. Fans would throw their passionate support for UND behind the Fighting Hawks, but the nickname itself would raise little additional passion for UND.

For your consideration: The University of North Dakota Pilots

Introducing The University of North Dakota Pilots. The Pilots. The UND Pilots.
In the interest of generating public support for one or more new nickname ideas, I offer for your consideration The Pilots.

Any new name must pass muster in a number of different areas to make a final list. The guidelines which follow come directly from the task force charged with finding a new nickname at Arkansas State University. I’m not suggesting that the University of North Dakota will work under the same exact framework, but at this stage guidelines such as these will inform and direct our discussion.

The name selected must not conflict with the school colors.

No conflict here. Any sort of Pilot logo could easily use green and/or pink as its primary colors, with black and white as secondary or alternate colors.

The name selected must be suitable for use with both men’s and women’s teams (non-gender specific).


The name selected should not be one that invites derision, humor or double meaning.

Aside from the fact that plane crashes inevitably occur from time to time, I couldn’t think of anything else to include here.

The name selected should be one that will stand the test of time.

Given the strong connection with UND’s Aerospace program and the continued presence of the Air Force Base in the Grand Forks community, I’m confident that Pilots can last forever.

The name selected should be one that suggests pride, courage and a strong competitive spirit and one that inspires the creation of effective imagery and logos for use in promotion and marketing efforts.

A pilot signifies pride, courage, and a competitive (and adventuresome) spirit. Some of the more famous pilots – Neil Armstrong, Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindbergh, and Chuck Yeager – are considered national heroes.

In terms of effective imagery and logos, I feel it passes the test with flying colors. “Pilots” can be effectively combined with the existing crossed “ND” logo or on its own as a primary or secondary logo .

The marketing possibilities are nearly endless. The club sections could be hangars, the booster organization could become the Pilots Club (with varying degrees of membership: aviators, bombardiers, co-pilots, etc.), and I’m sure Honda would love to jump on board since its Honda Pilot looks great in green.

The name selected will be distinctive and, if possible, unique to our conference, region and nation.

Distinctive, yes. Unique, almost.

Two former teams have been called the Pilots: major league baseball’s Seattle Pilots moved to Milwaukee and became the Brewers in 1970, while the ECHL’s Pensacola Ice Pilots reorganized and dropped to the Southern Professional Hockey League in 2008, becoming the Ice Flyers.

The University of Portland (Oregon) and LSU-Shreveport (Louisiana) athletic teams are both called the Pilots, while the Bethel College (Indiana) Pilots use a nautical theme for their logo. As far as I know, no other team competing at the collegiate level or higher is known as the Pilots or any derivative thereof. I have no problem with North Dakota being the fourth team in the nation (and first in our region) to be called the Pilots, given that the name fares so strongly in every other area.

There is an instant connection between the UND Pilots and the city of Grand Forks, the University of North Dakota (specifically its Aerospace program), and the Grand Forks Air Force Base. The Pilots is a team name that is ready for flight.

I recognize that no one name will resonate with all interested parties, and I expect that this idea will be no different. Please feel free to comment, dissect, offer alternatives, or avoid the discussion altogether. It’s up to you.

It’s official: UND to Big Sky in 2012

From Big Sky Conference press reelase:

The Big Sky Conference is privileged to announce that the University of North Dakota and Southern Utah University have accepted invitations to become core members of the Division I conference.

Both institutions received formal invitations from the league Friday, Oct. 29, advancing a process that began when the presidents of the nine current Big Sky Conference core universities approved expansion plans at their annual fall meeting on Oct. 20. Both institutions will officially join the Big Sky on July 1, 2012.

As to the question of South Dakota:

The Big Sky Conference is also on the verge of announcing the addition of the University of South Dakota as a 12th core member.

“We are negotiating with South Dakota,’’ Fullerton said. “They want to be part of the Big Sky Conference and we want them to be a member. They are just awaiting a final approval process. Approval processes are different at each school.’’

UND cancels Monday Summit League visit / Big Sky to announce expansion Monday

Draw your own conclusions about what this means about the likelihood of an imminent accepted invitation to Big Sky Conference…

Swing by the forum for the latest discussion

Update… and, according to WDAZ:

Coincidentally, the Big Sky Conference will be making an announcement on Monday and it is “very likely” they will be announcing “additions” to the D-I (FCS) conference, according to Big Sky Media Relations Director Jon Kasper.

N.D. Board of Higher Education to retire “Fighting Sioux” nickname

I’m sure you’ve seen the news elsewhere, but given all the coverage this topic has received here over the years, this needs mention…

Court, board decide to retire nickname

The court ruled Thursday that the board had the authority to dump the nickname at any time. The court rejected an appeal that sought to delay action.

A motion later Thursday at the board’s regularly scheduled meeting in Mayville to reconsider its vote in May to retire the nickname died after nobody seconded it.

The Grand Forks Herald report:

The university athletic teams will continue to be called the Sioux through the 2010-2011 school year while the school considers alternatives.

Weekend Preview: UND vs. St. Cloud State

A quick flashback to November 13th, 2009: UND entered the weekend series with St. Cloud State at 6-1-1, was ranked #2 in the country, and was scoring 3.62 goals per game and allowing 1.50. On the special teams side, North Dakota was scoring on 26% of their power play opportunities and had allowed only three power play goals in 41 chances (92.7%).

On a very unlucky Friday the 13th for the Fighting Sioux, St. Cloud junior forward Aaron Marvin met North Dakota senior defenseman Chay Genoway with a high elbow, sending Genoway into the glass and to the ice. UND’s captain and preseason All-American has not returned to game action (post-concussion syndrome) and the Green and White have struggled in his absence.

Since that game, North Dakota is 6-9-4 and is scoring 2.47 goals per contest while allowing 2.53. After converting on 13 of 50 man advantage opportunities with Genoway in the lineup, the Fighting Sioux have potted only 16 goals on 103 power plays (15.5%) in his absence.

There has been much debate this week regarding whether one of Genoway’s teammates will attempt to exact retribution against Marvin for his illegal hit; it is my opinion that the best way to do that would be on the scoreboard rather than attempting to injure an opponent.

For St. Cloud, the opening of the year 2010 was stellar. The Huskies won their first nine games after the calendar turned, but have just one victory in the past three games. During the current twelve game stretch (10-1-1), St. Cloud has converted better than 28 percent of their power play opportunities.

After this weekend’s series, SCSU will travel to Wisconsin for a pair before playing a home and home with Minnesota State Mankato to close out the regular season.

SCSU head coach Bob Motzko has been rotating netminders, playing junior Dan Dunn on Fridays and freshman Mike Lee on Saturdays. That cycle will continue in the series against the Fighting Sioux.

This weekend, the teams will be earning points for the UND/SCSU Challenge Cup, a traveling fan trophy awarded to the team which wins the four-game season series. The teams split the series in Grand Forks, so the Cup is on the line this weekend and will be awarded in St. Cloud on February 13, 2010. North Dakota has won at least a share of the Challenge Cup each of the past three seasons.

St. Cloud State Team Profile

Head Coach: (Bob Motzko, 5th season at SCSU, 99-68-23, .582)
National Ranking: #4/#4
PairWise Ranking: 4th
This Season: 18-8-4, 13-6-3 WCHA (t-1st)
Last Season: 18-17-3 overall, 13-13-2 WCHA (6th)
Team Offense: 3.27 goals scored/game
Team Defense: 2.50 goals allowed/game
Power Play: 20.6% (33 of 160)
Penalty Kill: 85.7% (108 of 126)
Key Players: Junior F Garrett Roe (11-22-33), Junior F Tony Mosey (10-16-26), Senior F Ryan Lasch (15-18-33), Senior D Garrett Raboin (5-13-18), Freshman G Mike Lee (8-6-3, 2.39 GAA, .923 SV%, 1 SO), Junior G Dan Dunn (10-2-1, 2.55 GAA, .914 SV%)

North Dakota Team Profile

Head Coach: Dave Hakstol (6th season at UND, 143-81-24, .625)
National Ranking: #11/#11
PairWise Ranking: t-11th
This Season: 13-10-5, 8-9-3 WCHA (6th)
Last Season: 24-15-4 overall (NCAA Northeast Regional semifinalist), 17-7-4 WCHA (1st)
Team Offense: 2.86 goals scored/game
Team Defense: 2.21 goals allowed/game
Power Play: 19.0% (29 of 153)
Penalty Kill: 86.6% (123 of 142)
Key Players: Sophomore F Jason Gregoire (13-10-23), Senior F Chris VandeVelde (9-12-21), Freshman F Danny Kristo (8-12-20), Junior F Evan Trupp (5-16-21), Junior D Derrick LaPoint (1-11-12), Sophomore G Brad Eidsness (12-7-4, 2.26 GAA, .906 SV%, 1 SO)

By The Numbers

Last Meeting: November 14, 2009 (Grand Forks, ND). One night after defeating St. Cloud but losing Chay Genoway, the Huskies scored the first three goals of the game and downed the Fighting Sioux 3-2 to earn a split of the weekend series.

Last Meeting in St. Cloud: January 31, 2009. North Dakota rebounds to defeat St. Cloud State 4-2 after suffering their first shutout loss of the season in Friday’s opener (3-0). Senior captain Ryan Duncan scored the game-winner for the Fighting Sioux.

Most Important Meeting: March 17, 2001 (St. Paul, MN). St. Cloud State defeated North Dakota 6-5 to claim the 2001 WCHA Final Five Championship. Derek Eastman scored the game-winner in overtime after UND scored three goals in the final ten minutes of regulation to force the extra session.

All-time Series: UND leads the all-time series, 51-28-10 (.629), and holds a record of 20-15-5 (.563) in games played in St. Cloud.

Game News and Notes

St, Cloud has not won a game this season when trailing after one period of play (0-3-3), but the Huskies are doubling up opponents (38 goals scored, 19 allowed) in the opening frame. UND sophomore goaltender Brad Eidsness is 4-1 in his career against St. Cloud. SCSU head coach Bob Motzko will be looking to pick up his 100th win this weekend. Under the new 12-team schedule rotation beginning next season, the Fighting Sioux and Huskies will continue to play four regular season games each year.

The Prediction

The last two times North Dakota has traveled to St. Cloud, the Fighting Sioux have lost on Friday and won on Saturday. I think UND will reverse the trend this weekend with a strong first period on Friday night. In Saturday’s rematch, tempers will flare and the Huskies power play will be the difference. UND 3-2, SCSU 4-1.

If this prediction holds, North Dakota and St. Cloud State will share the Challenge Cup for the first time since the 2007-08 season.

On a Personal Note

I look forward to this series every year because of the unique relationship we have with the Center Ice Club, the official hockey booster organization for the St. Cloud State University Huskies. On behalf of the Center Ice Club, I would like to invite you to the UND/SCSU pre-game social on Saturday afternoon from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. at Legends Grill and Bar in the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites in St. Cloud. This is a great opportunity to meet fans on both sides of the rivalry, share in some complimentary food and door prizes, and view the Challenge Cup. This event is free and open to all fans 21 and older.

UND national television deal puts Sioux sports in 54 million homes

Most people who read this space already know this, but UND has struck a major television deal for national television distribution of University of North Dakota athletics.

From UND’s press release:

Fox College Sports is available on cable in 54 million homes nationwide.

Fox College Sports will distribute three home football games, all home men’s hockey games and 12 home basketball games in 2009-10. FCS will also broadcast the weekly Sioux Sports Extra magazine show.

By my count that’s:

  • 3 football games
  • 12 basketball games
  • 20 hockey games

Of course, that’s only counting home games.

Playing higher level competition in football and basketball increases the number of UND’s road games that will appear on TV. One away football game this season, UND @ Northwestern State, has already been nationally televised.

Several other WCHA teams already have national distribution of some of their home games, so UND fans may also be able to catch some men’s hockey games from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Denver each season.

Which games are broadcast as part of UND’s deal?

From UND Men’s Basketball Schedule:
Sat, Nov. 21 UMKC 1:00p
Sat, Dec. 19 Northern Iowa 1:00p
Sat, Jan. 23 South Dakota 7:00p
Thu, Feb. 11 NJIT 8:00p
Thu, Feb. 25 at Chicago St 7:30p
Thu, Mar. 04 Houston Baptist 8:00p

From UND Women’s Basketball Schedule:
Wed, Nov. 18 Wyoming 7:00p
Fri, Dec. 18 Northern Arizona 7:00p
Sat, Jan. 23 South Dakota 5:00p
Thu, Feb. 11 NJIT 6:00p
Thu, Feb. 25 at Chicago St 5:00p
Thu, Mar. 04 Houston Baptist 6:00p

From UND Football Schedule:
Sat, Oct. 03 South Dakota 4:00p
Sat, Oct. 17 Sioux Falls 1:00p
Sat, Oct. 31 Cal Poly 4:00p

From UND Men’s Hockey Schedule:
All 20 home games!

How much total UND programming is this?

For an idea of how much the Sioux are now on national TV, here are UND’s appearances on FCS in the next month.

From the FCS Printable Schedules:

All times Eastern.

10/03/09 South Dakota at North Dakota* Atlantic 5:00pm
10/17/09 Sioux Falls at North Dakota* Central 2:00pm
10/31/09 Cal Poly at North Dakota Atlantic 5:00pm
* FCS Exclusive

10/04/09 Manitoba at North Dakota (exhibition)* Atlantic 7:00pm
10/09/09 Merrimack at North Dakota* Atlantic 8:30pm
10/10/09 Merrimack at North Dakota* Central 8:00pm
10/16/09 Minnesota at North Dakota Central 8:30pm
10/17/09 Minnesota at North Dakota Atlantic 8:00pm
* FCS Exclusive

Sioux Sports Extra
9/30/09 6:30p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 5 (D)
9/30/09 1:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 5 (D)
10/02/09 4:30p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 5 (D)
10/02/09 2:00a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 5 (D)
10/07/09 6:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 5 (D)
10/07/09 1:30 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 6 (D)
10/09/09 4:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 6 (D)
10/10/09 7:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 6 (D)
10/14/09 6:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 6 (D)
10/14/09 1:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 7 (D)
10/16/09 4:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 7 (D)
10/16/09 2:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 7 (D)
10/21/09 6:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 7 (D)
10/21/09 1:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 8 (D)
10/23/09 4:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 8 (D)
10/23/09 2:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 8 (D)
10/28/09 6:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 8 (D)
10/28/09 1:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 9 (D)
10/30/09 4:30 p (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 9 (D)
10/30/09 2:00 a (CS) UND Fighting Sioux Sports Extra 09 (FCS) 9 (D)

More publicity from FCS itself

The Fox College Sports web site is already flush with UND ads. These were all taken from the front page within the last two days:

And here are FCS’s “weekly highlights” for this week:

That’s some good company.

What do people think of us? Forums:
Hockey: UND Hockey via Satellite
Hockey: FCS to carry UND hockey
Football: TV coverage
Football: USD at UND television coverage
UND’s Reclassification to D-I: FSSN on Fox College Sports

Or, if you’re a tweeter:
Twitter search Fox College Sports Sioux

End of summer — welcome back!

Were you out on an Alaskan fishing boat all summer, spent all your spare time scheming how to get your share of the “stimulus” dollars, busy hosting the Tony Awards, or just otherwise lost track of UND athletics during the summer?  I’ve thrown together a quick cheat sheet of UND summer athletics happenings you might have missed.


Moves around the NCAA

Dean Blais was selected to coach Nebraska-Omaha

Bemidji State and Nebraska Omaha will join the WCHA in 2010-11 (WCHA release)

The CCHA denied Alabama-Huntsville membership (many thought the WCHA poaching UNO would create an opening for UAH)

Player moves

After playing a season in the USHL, Forney signed with the Thrashers, will not return to UND (collegehockeynews story)

Frattin was dismissed from the team following after a DUI capped some off-season troubles ( release)

Women’s hockey — The University of Minnesota was stunned to see the Lamoureux twins ask to be released from their scholarships so they could transfer to UND (StarTribune story)


Josh Murray declared academically ineligible.

Like many other sports, football got new uniforms (photo from  See more on UND’s new identity branding below.

UND recently announced that it is traveling to Montana for a game in 2010, with a return game expected in 2013.  With an eye on Montana’s proclivity to take the home game then buy out the road game, UND secured a $100,000 buyout clause.  This topic is still getting lots of play in the scheduling forum thread.

It’s not news, but the talk of UND football this summer has definitely been the Labor Day weekend season opener at Texas Tech (Sept. 5 at 6pm CT).


A.D. Faison’s contract was extended through 2012 (UND release)

UND’s D-I transition mate, the University of South Dakota, was admitted to the Summit League (USD release) beginning in 2011-12.  Summit commissioner Tom Douple had, somewhat surprisingly, previously weighed in on the UND nickname controversy, asserting that the conference would not take a look at UND until the controversy is “resolved” (the State of ND settlement with the NCAA apparently being insufficient).

Which leads to…

The battle over UND’s nickname is coming to a close, one way or another.  On May 15, 2009, the N.D. State board of Higher Education unanimously decreed that UND must eliminate the Fighting Sioux nickname by Oct. 1 unless it secures 30-year agreements from the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock Sioux tribes granting approval to continue using the Fighting Sioux name.

Which leads to…

UND revised its Notre Dame-style interlocking ND logo to bear slightly less of a resemblance to Notre Dame’s logo.  The letters are slightly shadowed and they reversed which part of the N strokes overlap the D. (announcement, logo identity sheet)

I kind of threw this list together by browsing the forums and news headlines.  What did I miss?

Why N.D. settled the nickname suit

There have been a lot of criticisms of the settlement of N.D.’s Sioux nickname lawsuit against the NCAA (from questions about what UND got for $1m to theories about a football cabal conspiring to pressure UND to sacrifice the nickname for a chance to play Big Ten teams). The bottom-line, as many noted at the time, was that UND was suing the NCAA on procedural grounds — UND was asserting that the NCAA executive committee didn’t have the authority to issue the nickname rule — so all the NCAA needed to do to render the lawsuit moot was pass the same rule using proper procedures.

What the State of N.D. knew when it settled, and a lot of fans speculated, is that the NCAA was about to change their rules to formally grant the executive committee such authority.

From Increased Authority (Grand Forks Herald)

“In my estimation, we were going to win the lawsuit,” Stenehjem said, “but this amendment would have mooted that. We would have won the lawsuit in December 2007, and this was enacted January 12, 2008. So, it would have been a short-lived victory.”

Fan predictions that the NCAA membership wouldn’t grant its executive committee such authority, due to fear of their own oxes being next to be gored, proved unfortunately wildly wrong.

Stenehjem said he’d been told the amendment vote passed with about 99.6 percent of people voting in support.

UND faculty NCAA representative Sue Jeno attended the Nashville conference and said she was one of only a handful of representatives to vote against the amendment.

A 2007 NCAA student-athlete handbook lists the number of the association’s member institutions at slightly more than 1,000 spread between the three divisions. If the percentage vote quoted to Stenehjem is correct, that would mean Jeno was one of only about five members to vote against the amendment.

Continuing the lawsuit, given this, would have been throwing good money after bad. Given the inevitable outcome, it’s hard to argue that N.D. should have done anything other than precisely what it did. They put an immediate halt to the rising court expenses and won the valuable settlement concessions of being removed from the hostile and abusive list and being granted additional time, not subject to sanctions, to resolve the issue.

As The Sicatoka said in the “Negotiated Settlement” thread:

The AG, Mr. Stenehjem, did what he could with (what little) he had and based on this he deserves some credit:

At least he got us (temporarily) off the list and some time to look for middle ground.

A look at UND’s Athletic Director candidates

As UND looks toward its transition to D-I, it is also evaluating candidates for the Athletic Director who will lead athletics through that transition.

The selection committee has whittled down the numerous applicants to a few leading candidates, though information on those candidates has been somewhat hard to come by from the University itself. Thanks particularly to the efforts of Sioux fans in the 221-post forum thread, UND’s Next Athletics Director, supplemented with an afternoon of web searches, here’s a look at the remaining UND athletic director candidates.

Have anything to say about the candidates, or know something we don’t? Stop by the forum and chat.

Barbara Burke

BurkeSenior Associate Athletics Director, University of Wyoming (NCAA D-I/BCS, Mountain West Conference)

M.E. Education/Administration of Athletics, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, 1984

B.S. Physical Education, Western Michigan, 1980 (letters in basketball and softball)

Notable experience

  • 2001 – Wyoming – Senior Associate Athletic Director
  • 1998 – Wyoming – Associate Athletics Director/Senior Women’s Administrator
  • 1998 – Texas El Paso (UTEP) – Interim Athletics Director
  • 1994 – Marshall – Associate Athletics Director/Senior Women’s Administrator

“Burke oversees all internal operations of the UW Athletics Department, as well as directly supervises game management for football and men’s and women’s basketball.”

“In addition to overseeing the sports programs, she is in charge of the day-to-day internal operations of the department, is directly involved in the marketing and promotion of Wyoming’s athletics programs and is responsible for the department’s compliance with Title IX objectives. Currently, her focus is on the completion of several major building projects.”


Tim Hickman

hickmanAssociate Athletic Director, Operations, University of Missouri (NCAA D-I/BCS, Big Twelve Conference)

B.S. Business Administration, University of Missouri, 1989

Notable experience

  • 2002 – Missouri, Associate Athletic Director
  • 2001 – Missouri, Assistant Athletic Director (following merger of Hearnes and Missouri athletics operations)
  • 1992 – Director of the Hearnes Center

“Hickman oversees all business activities for the Missouri Department of Athletics, including development and oversight of the department’s $44 million budget, purchasing, human resources and daily office operations, while additionally directing the operations of Mizzou Arena and the Hearnes Center. He also oversees the areas of facilities, game operations, food service and computing operations, while serving as the administrative liason to Mizzou’s nationally ranked baseball program and up-and-coming softball program. In his current capacity as department CFO, Tim also works very closely with development, Mizzou Sports Properties and outsourcing contracts.”

Other info from the ‘net

  • Chamber of Commerce – chair of budget and finance committee
  • Callaway Bank – board member
  • He has served on committees or the boards of the Central Missouri Food Bank, the Mid-Missouri Tourism Council, the Columbia Chamber of Commerce and the Missouri Balloon Corporation.
  • Grew up in the family grocery business, Hickman’s IGA
  • Owned Columbia, MO, restaurant, T.K. Brothers Grill & Games, with brothers


Tim Leonard

leonard.jpgAssociate Athletics Director/Development – University of Central Florida (Conference USA, NCAA D-I/BCS)

B.A. Communication, Boise State University, 1992

Relevant experience

  • 2003 – Associate Athletics Director/Development – University of Central Florida
  • 1999 – Assistant Athletics Director for External Affairs and the executive director of the Golden Knights Club
  • 1997 – Assistant Director of the Bronco Athletic Association at Boise State
  • 1992 – Director of Annual Giving at Illinois State University

Led fundraising during the fundraising, building, and naming-rights sale of new football stadium.

“After serving as an assistant athletics director for external affairs and the executive director of the Golden Knights Club for four years, Leonard now has major gifts as his primary fundraising focus for UCF athletics. He also has management oversight of the GKC, premium seating and the University’s Annual Fund.”

“In his six years at Central Florida, Leonard has excelled at getting people to believe in potential. When the football team was struggling, it was tough to convince donors to invest in a program that didn’t appear to have the school’s full commitment. That mentality has been completely transformed, largely because of persistence.”


Tom Sadler

sadler.jpgPresident, Global Entertainment Corp. Facility Management Company

B.A. Industrial/Organizational Psychology, St. Thomas Aquinas College

Relevant Experience

  • 2005 – President, Global Entertainment Corp. Facility Management Company
  • 2003 – Associate Athletics Director for Administrative Services, University of Hawaii (UH)
  • 1983 – Various positions (incl Assistant Athletics Director, Stadium Management Director) Arizona State University

“While at UH, Sadler was responsible for the internal day-to-day operations of the department that covered multiple sports and related events. He also negotiated a new facility concession contract that generated an increase in revenue.”

“Sadler has been there and done it, helping to implement a $41 million capital campaign for ASU while also eliminating a $1 million budget shortfall.”

“…Arizona State University (ASU) over a period of 20 years, during which he directed intercollegiate operations, managing and staging more than 250 events each year for ASU, and serving as tournament director for several NCAA and Pacific-10 Conference championships. He served as a key member of the host committee in Arizona for Super Bowl XXX, and guided the development of a comprehensive operating manual for several sporting events.”


Brian Faison

faison.jpgAssistant Vice President for Athletic Development, New Mexico State University (NCAA D-I/BCS, Western Athletic Conference)

University of Missouri, 1972

Relevant experience

  • 2004 – Assistant Vice President for Athletics Development, New Mexico State University
  • 1999 – Athletics Director, New Mexico State University
  • 1988 – Athletics Director, Indian State
  • 1984 – athletics administration, Louisville
  • 1979 – athletics administration, Illinois State
  • 1974 – athletics administration, Missouri

“Faison says the new position frees him up to focus on fundraising and one of his goals will be to elevate the Athletics Department’s revenues from its current $9.2 million to $18 million within the next 12 months.”

“Faison’s five years as head of the department have been highlighted by success in the classroom, on the playing field and in the development of athletic facilities.”


Paul Schlickmann

schlickmann.jpgStony Brook University, Executive Associate Director of Athletics

B.A. American Studies, Trinity College (men’s basketball player), 1989

M.S. Physical Education, Springfield College, 1995

Relevant Experience

  • 2005 – Executive Associate Director of Athletics, Stony Brook
  • 2003 – Senior Associate Director of Athletics, Stony Brook
  • 1999 – Senior Assistant Athletics Director for Varsity Program Administration and Football Operations, Yale University
  • 1993 – Assistant Athletics Director for Varsity Program Administration, Yale University

“He is a talented administrator who understands that the primary function of intercollegiate athletics at Stony Brook is to advance the educational mission of the university.”

“Schlickmann has supervised the daily internal operations of 35 intercollegiate programs as a member of the senior management team that sets department policy at Yale. He was responsible for all varsity program operations for men’s soccer and men’s lacrosse while also overseeing facility operations and event management. He developed and managed department operating budgets which totaled nearly $2.5 million, and administered athlete initial eligibility, team travel, contest scheduling and the management of conference and postseason championships.

His football operations duties included the oversight of 150 gameday personnel in the 60,000-seat Yale Bowl which had an average attendance of over 23,000 for Yale home games. In addition, he served as the athletics department liaison to undergraduate admissions and financial aid while managing and formulating team budgets.”

“He is responsible for all varsity program operations for men’s basketball, football, baseball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s lacrosse, men’s tennis and men’s and women’s track and field while also overseeing facility operations and event management.

In addition, he develops and manages a department operating budget of $12 million, administers team travel, contest scheduling and the management of conference and postseason championships. In 2004-05, Stony Brook balanced its operating budget for the first time in the last six years while chairing the search committee for Men’s Lacrosse and Men’s Basketball, the Director of Speed Strength and Conditioning and the Director of Student-Athlete Development.

Schlickmann is responsible for personnel matters including the coordination of national searches for coaches, staff and administrative positions, personnel employment contracts and employee performance appraisals.”

“At the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta, Schlickmann served as a sector coordinator where he coordinated various aspects of facility preparation and event planning for the men’s and women’s soccer venue. He also worked as the Deputy Commissioner of the Special Olympics World Games in the summer of 1995.”