New Athletic Director in Town


When we launched the
search back in February, I
was asked by I think one of
the reporters in this room,
what are you looking for
in a new athletic director?
I said, we need someone to be
the face of UMass Athletics,
who can sell the power
and the value of athletics
to the university community,
the commonwealth, and beyond.
Ryan Bamford is that someone.
I know we’re going to do
great things together.
Thank you.

In my homework,
and I did probably
as much homework of
UMass as they did of me,
a couple of things
really struck me.
Everybody, to a person, talked
about the people of UMass
and how devoted they were to
the brand and to the university.
And so this is a great
opportunity for us
to continue that.
To be fair, the other
observation I heard
was one of challenge,
of challenges at UMass.
There’s challenges everywhere.
And I tell you that I
look at those challenges
as opportunities to be better.
The other thing that
struck me was leadership.
And the chancellor, in
the last 2 and 1/2 years,
and some of the things that he’s
done to bring the university
to become one of the top
research public institutions
in the country.
And on the academic
side, when you
have tremendous
growth like that you
want to be associated with
it on the athletic side.
And you want to complement it.
The most important thing
that we’re going to do
is provide a world class
student athlete experience.
As a former student
athlete, honestly, it’s
one of the reasons why
I’m in administration
is to give back, give
back to young people
to make sure that they
have a great experience.
I want people to
understand how great it
is to be a Minuteman
or a Minutewoman.
And I want to make it
the best UMass it can be.
Thank you for the spectacular
welcome to the UMass family.
I’m thrilled to be here.
Go UMass.
He has an unbelievable
energy and dedication.
He traveled with my basketball
team for about three years
and did everything he had
to do to make us successful.
I listened to his
press conference
and said one of the
things he is going to do
was try to help the coaches
here to get what they need.
And I certainly
understand and know
that he’s going to do that from
what he did for me in the three
years that he worked with me
one on one with my basketball
program was tremendous.
Can you get us all?
He came to Yale and
absolutely lit the place up.
It’s special that he’s here.
We’re so proud of him.
I had to be here
to help celebrate
and to let him know how
proud Yale is of his work
in earning this great
position of leadership
here at the University
of Massachusetts.
It’s fabulous.
Thank you so much guys.
I appreciate you being here.
We had the chance to meet
him as a group last week,
and we were really excited about
his knowledge, his enthusiasm,
his spirit, his pride.
I think his goals are our goals.
I think it’s going
to be a perfect fit.
He’s exactly, I think, what
we need– high character.
He’s really passionate
about what he does.
And in the short time that
we’ve got to know him,
I think he’s already energized
the athletic department,
and also, the campus community.
I look forward to
getting to know you guys.
Everybody was just enthused
even during the interview.
It wasn’t something
we just talked about.
You could just see
our eyes light up.
He looked at this
as an opportunity
to really make
change, and I think
he saw this is a sleeping
giant that we’ve got to wake up
here at the University.
His heart’s in the right place
in terms of getting the student
athletes to balance the two
between what’s on the field
and what’s in the classroom.
And that’s important for the
student athletes to remember,
so I think he brings
the appropriate balance.
I just think this is
a great fit for him.
He’s into family.
He’s into commitment.
He’s into winning,
and he certainly
wants to do it together.
My door’s always open.
If there’s you want to
come and chat about–
He really wants
to prove himself.
And obviously, the experience,
and the combination
of personality, and the
mood, and the enthusiasm
were a winning factor.
Well, I heard he’s a
great 3-point shooter.
So we might bring
him for some tips.

Author Since: Mar 11, 2019

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