University of Pittsburgh
May 15, 2003

University of Pittsburgh Names Jeffrey P. Long New Athletic Director


University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg announced Friday that Jeffrey P. Long will be Pitt's new athletic director.

As the University of Oklahoma's (OU) senior associate athletic director, Long, 43, helped the Sooners maintain one of the nation's top intercollegiate sports programs. He has two decades of collegiate athletic experience, including time as a Division I athletic director, associate director, assistant director, and coach.

Long has worked in many of the country's highest-profile conferences, including the Big 12, Big Ten, Big East, and Atlantic Coast Conference.

"In seeking assessments of Jeff Long, we received one consistent message—that he is a rising star," Nordenberg said of the appointment. "Among the many qualities he brings to the University of Pittsburgh are a personal record of high achievement, broad-ranging experience in some of the country's most successful athletic programs, an overriding commitment to the complete development of student-athletes, and a reputation for integrity.

"In recent years, our own athletics program has moved through a period of extraordinary progress. With Jeff Long as our new athletic director, I am confident that we will sustain our momentum and reach even greater heights and success in the future."

"I am extremely excited about the opportunity to work with Chancellor Nordenberg and the faculty and staff at the University of Pittsburgh," Long said. "I have a great respect for the academic and athletic traditions of this institution and am proud to become a part of it. My initial goal is to build on the momentum that has been gathering the past several years. We have a talented group of student-athletes and quality coaches and administrators. I know their efforts over the next few years are going to make our University, city, and entire region extremely proud."

At Oklahoma, Long oversaw all external affairs, including development, marketing and promotions, licensing, media relations, ticket operations, radio and television, and SoonerVision productions. He also was the primary administrator for football and men's basketball and the sport supervisor for baseball, wrestling, and men and women's golf.

Arriving in Norman in January 2001, Long was part of a development effort that raised $62 million in just over two years. As a result, Oklahoma reached the $110 million mark for its $100 million capital campaign for intercollegiate athletics. Annual gifts to the Sooner Club grew each year of his tenure, including a

16 percent increase in 2001 and 14 percent increase in 2002.

In ticketing, Long led the creation of a new student ticket plan for football and men's basketball that resulted in improved student attendance and revenue. He supervised a sale of 27 suites, 2,250 club seats, and 5,000 chair back seats for football in the newly expanded Memorial Stadium.

Long also was instrumental in the planning for Memorial Stadium's $69 million expansion. He provided administrative oversight for the final phase of a $17.8 million addition to Oklahoma's basketball home, the Lloyd Noble Center.

Additionally, the OU teams under Long's supervision enjoyed tremendous national success. The football team achieved back-to-back Top 10 finishes with victories in the Rose and Cotton bowls; men's basketball also had a pair of Top 10 finishes and advanced to the 2002 Final Four; wrestling ranked third nationally the last two seasons; and baseball and women's golf made National Collegiate Athletic Association postseason berths.

Prior to Oklahoma, Long was the athletic director for two years at Eastern Kentucky University (EKU). He significantly improved Eastern Kentucky's athletic infrastructure with the completion of several facility projects such as the Classroom and Conditioning Building, which included an all-sports weight room, a state-of-the-art training room, and offices and meeting rooms for the football program.

Through a private gift, he developed the Student-Athlete Academic Success Center, which dramatically upgraded academic support for the Colonels' student-athlete community.

Long spearheaded a marketing partnership between EKU and Daktronics that yielded the first on-campus Division I-AA video scoreboard, valued at more than $500,000, with no expenditure of institutional funds. His other efforts resulted in a more than 200 percent revenue increase from corporate partnerships and sponsorships.

Long also served a short tenure at Virginia Tech as associate athletic director prior to his Eastern Kentucky post. The majority of Long's career in collegiate athletic administration, though, was spent at the University of Michigan (UM). Hired by legendary coach and athletic director Bo Schembechler, Long rose through a number of administrative posts at Michigan before ultimately reaching associate athletic director.

A highlight of Long's Michigan tenure was his directorship of the first on-campus Kickoff Classic in 1995. He served as the Wolverines' administrative liaison for 11 football bowl games (including the 1997 national champion team's Rose Bowl appearance), three men's basketball Final Fours (including UM's 1989 national championship), and three ice hockey Frozen Fours (which included two national titles).

Long also has held football coaching and administrative positions at Rice University, Duke University, and North Carolina State University.

A 1982 graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University with a bachelor's degree in economics, Long earned seven varsity letters in football and baseball. He received his master's degree in education from Miami University (Ohio) in 1983, after serving as a graduate assistant football coach.

A native of Kettering, Ohio, Long is married to the former Fanny Gellrich. The couple has two children, Stephanie, 8, and Christina, 3.

Long will begin his duties as athletic director by June 15. Pitt senior associate athletic director Carol Sprague will serve as interim athletic director prior to Long's arrival at Pitt.