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SMU's Rick Hart Named Under Armour AD of the Year

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SMU's Rick Hart Named Under Armour AD of the Year

Postby PonyPride » Tue Mar 03, 2020 7:16 pm

From SMUMustangs.com:

Hart Named Under Armour AD of the Year

CLEVELAND (NACDA/SMU) – SMU's Rick Hart has been named Under Armour AD of the Year Award (ADOY), the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) announced today. The ADOY Award highlights the efforts of athletics directors at all levels for their commitment and positive contributions to student-athletes, campuses and their surrounding communities.

Upon Hart's arrival on the Hilltop in 2012, he developed the Strategic Plan for SMU Athletics titled, "The SMU Advantage," which focuses on the student-athlete and aligns the Athletics Department with the educational mission of the University.

Under Hart, SMU student-athletes have excelled in the classroom, with 67% earning cumulative GPAs of 3.0 or higher and over one-third boasting GPAs of 3.5 or better. SMU has also experienced broad success athletically, winning 22 conference team championships across 11 sports and advancing 15 sports to the post-season. In the community, SMU's partnership with the City of Dallas has been strengthened through community service, Trinity Forest Golf Course, and the "Born and Raised" and Triple-D/Pony initiatives.

Due to the generosity of alumni and friends, annual giving has reached record levels in support of operations, projects and facilities. Since 2012, SMU has renovated and expanded Moody Coliseum and opened numerous championship-caliber facilities including the Indoor Performance Center, the Miller Event Center, the SMU Tennis Complex, the Robson & Lindley Aquatics Center and Barr-McMillion Natatorium and the Payne Stewart SMU Golf Training Center at Trinity Forest Golf Club. The Washburne Soccer and Track Stadium is scheduled to be completed in Fall 2021.

Hart was one of four winners at the FBS level, joined by North Carolina's Bubba Cunningham, Appalachian State's Doug Gillin and Mack Rhoades of Baylor.

"The future of our industry continues to look bright with athletics leaders like these at the helm of departments across the country," said Bob Vecchione, NACDA Chief Executive Officer.

"The Athletics Director of the Year Award acknowledges the leadership and positive influence top athletics directors have had at their respective institutions across all levels," said Brian Cummings, Under Armour's vice president of North America sports marketing. "Under Armour is proud to partner with NACDA to honor those individuals who set the standard in guiding their student-athletes through the on-going journey to be better."

A third-generation athletics administrator, Hart's father, Dave, served as A.D. at Tennessee, Florida State and East Carolina, and his late grandfather, Dave Sr., served in a variety of roles within collegiate athletics including stints as a Coach, A.D. and Conference Commissioner. Hart and his wife, Allison, are proud parents of Trevor and Caroline.

Winners will be recognized on Tuesday, June 9, prior to the Featured Session at 4 p.m. during NACDA's 55th Annual Convention at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas.
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