- Tennessee has hired former Kansas State athletic director John Currie as athletic director after what has been a long, drawn out process. For weeks now, the presumptuous, obvious hire was either UTC AD Dave Blackburn or former coach Phillip Fulmer.
First reported by Jimmy Hyams of WNML:
BREAKING NEWS: Source: John Currie of Kansas State has been hired as Tennessee’s new athletic director.
— Jimmy Hyams (@JimmyHyams) February 28, 2017
John Currie graduated from Wake Forest in 1993 where he served as an intern in the athletic department. In 1994-1996, he held the assistant athletic director position for the Demon Deacons. In 1997, he joined Tennessee as the Executive Director of the Volunteer Athletic Scholarship Fund. He later was promoted to Associate Athletics Director for Development in 2002. He received a Master’s Degree is Sports Management from UT in 2003 according to his Kansas State bio.
Currie stayed with Tennessee until 2008 when he left to take the position of AD at Kansas State. During his last few years at Tennessee, he served as one of Mike Hamilton’s lead advisors and most trusted confidants. Currie certainly brings a strong Tennessee background and ties to the job. He is a VFL.
Kansas State Accomplishments:
John Currie improved the Kansas State athletic department tremendously in his 8 years there. He grew revenue and fundraising to the point that over $200 million went towards facility improvements across all sports. This number is unbelievably high at a program the size of Kansas State. Additionally, all of his teams remained above the NCAA academic standard at all times during his years in charge.
On the fields and courts, the Wildcats won Big 12 titles in football, men’s basketball, and baseball under his watch. Kansas State also fielded 137 All-Americans over the past 8 years in all sports. Additionally, he convinced Bill Snyder to return to the sidelines for the football team in 2009. Snyder holds every record in the Kansas State books. He brought the Wildcats back to relevance after Currie hired him in 2009. On the basketball court, Currie hired Bruce Weber to lead the men’s team. While at Illinois, Weber took a team into the tournament with an unblemished record. In his first year at Kansas State, he won the Big 12 coach of the year and brought Kansas State its first Big 12 title in 30 years. As these successes show, Currie boasts a proven track record of hiring successful coaches on a budget much smaller than the one at UT.
John Currie may not have been the obvious hire, but new Chancellor Beverly Davenport may have gotten this one right. For now, let’s all say just say, “Welcome home John Currie.”