UConn hires Auburn COO David Benedict as AD

(via UConn athletics)
(via UConn athletics)

A month after Warde Manuel was officially hired away from Connecticut by Michigan, the Huskies have a new athletic director.

The school announced Monday that it has hired David Benedict, the current Chief Operating Officer of Auburn athletics, as its new athletic director. Before his time at Auburn (beginning in 2014), Benedict worked as an athletic administrator at Minnesota (2012-14), Virginia Commonwealth (2010-12), Long Beach State (2007-10) and Arizona State (1996-2006).

Though he previously served as interim AD at VCU, UConn will be Benedict’s first full-time athletic director position.

“We make this announcement with excitement, pride, and tremendous optimism about the future,” said UConn President Susan Herbst. “Today’s AD must be have the sophistication to manage and closely oversee finance, marketing, media contracts, fundraising and fan engagement, among many other things. And these responsibilities are all secondary to the traditional responsibilities of utmost import: taking care of our student athletes, supporting their academic success, and making sure that our coaches have what they need to compete successfully.

“We sought a leader whose grasp of the national landscape and relentless pursuit of excellence would be second-to-none. I am very happy to say that we found exactly what we were looking for in David Benedict.”

Added Benedict: “I am very excited to join UConn Nation as its Director of Athletics and am very grateful to President Herbst, Board of Trustees Chairman Larry McHugh and the entire Board of Trustees and Search Committee. The success of UConn from both an academic and athletic perspective is known around the country. UConn wins national championships and plays in bowl games and I wanted to be part of an elite program like this. I look forward to getting to know all of our coaches, student-athletes and administrators. My family and I can’t wait to be part of this special university!”

According to UConn’s news release, Benedict “directed all the day-to-day operations of the athletic department” at Auburn and served as Deputy Athletic Director at Minnesota, where he “identified areas to increase external support and provided stewardship for sponsors and major donors.” He also worked in fundraising at VCU and Long Beach and worked in external relations as an Associate Athletic Director for Development at Arizona State.

Benedict, a native of Tempe, Ariz., is a graduate of Southern Utah, where he played football.

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