University President Marc Johnson has recommended Doug Knuth to the Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents to become the University of Nevada, Reno's next director of athletics. The recommendation will be considered at the Regents' special video teleconference meeting Thursday afternoon.
The proposed agreement calls for a three-year contract through June 30, 2016 for Knuth with a yearly base salary of $285,000.
"Doug has tremendous experience and enthusiasm for college athletics and he has a great understanding of the role of education and athletics in the lives of our student-athletes," Johnson said. "He is a proven fundraiser who has had success in generating both traditional and entrepreneurial revenue streams. He is also very familiar with the Mountain West Conference and the challenges of conference realignment, and I am confident that Doug is the right person to continue the successes and tradition of Wolf Pack Athletics."
Knuth has spent the past eight years at the University of Utah as the Senior Associate Athletics Director for External Relations. He has more than 18 years of professional experience in athletics administration and has led Utah to record fundraising in each of the last seven years. He leads the Utes' fundraising, marketing and ticketing efforts and oversees the corporate partner program and athletics licensing/merchandising. He is also the primary liaison to University Development and Advancement. Knuth serves as a member of Utah's senior staff, participating in strategic planning, objectives and goals and policies and procedures in addition to administrative oversight over the sports of women's basketball and men's and women's tennis.
He has successfully launched a $150 million comprehensive athletics campaign and has doubled the Utes' annual fund in five years. Knuth has also taken a leadership role in the strategic planning process of Utah's $1.2 billion university capital campaign. He is a member of the prestigious I-A Athletic Director's Association Fellows Program, served on the NCAA Tennis Committee from 2007-10 and has held leadership roles in the National Association of Athletic Development Directors since 2010.
Prior to Utah, Knuth served as the assistant athletics director for development at Michigan State for five years and was responsible for the annual giving program. He also managed major gifts associated with the expansion of Spartan Stadium through suite and club seats sales.
He started his career in athletics administration and fundraising at the University of Connecticut and also spent time at the University of Massachusetts and Ohio University.
Knuth earned his bachelor's degree in business administration at the University of Connecticut in 1994 where he was also a four-year letter winner and captain on the men's tennis team. He holds master's degrees in sports administration and facility management from Ohio University (1998) and business administration from Northwood University (2002).
A native of Fairfield, Conn., Knuth and his wife, Marilyn, have a daughter, Gabby (4 ½), and a son, Lance (2 ½).
"I would like to thank the search committee, the athletics staff and coaches, and especially President Johnson for this outstanding opportunity to lead the University of Nevada athletics department. I am excited to join a University which places a high value on the transformational power of education as well as the power of positive athletics. I believe Nevada is poised for greatness.
"Marilyn and I look forward to joining the community and raising our family as part of the Wolf Pack family."
Knuth was selected following a national search that was launched in December of 2012. A search committee chaired by Bruce Shively, associate vice president for planning, budget and analysis, and coordinated by Janet Sanderson, assistant to the University president, identified the semifinalists following interviews with a diverse pool of highly qualified candidates. Three candidates participated in on-campus forums with athletics' coaches and staff, faculty, staff, students and community members in early March.