Release Date: September 10, 2014
BUFFALO, NY — University at Buffalo President Satish K. Tripathi today announced a five-year contract extension for Athletic Director Daniel J. “Danny” White, an agreement that extends White’s contract until 2019.
“As the University at Buffalo continues to rise in the ranks of the very best national public research universities, our UB athletics department is also elevating its reputation for excellence under the leadership of Athletic Director Danny White,” Tripathi said.
“Danny brings exceptional energy and vision to UB Athletics,” he added. “This is evident in his pursuit of athletic excellence across our programs and, most importantly, in his commitment to providing our student-athletes with an exceptional educational experience.”
Tripathi called White’s contributions “vital” to the university community and said he was very pleased to recognize White’s leadership and successes with this contract extension.
“I would like to thank President Tripathi for the opportunity to continue to serve UB at such an exciting and transformational moment.” White said. “His leadership has positioned this institution for higher levels of excellence in so many ways and my wife, Shawn, and I are proud to be a part of the team.
“To be sure, we are all encouraged about the progress we have made as an athletic department, but my staff and I are even more excited of what the future holds as we continue to build America’s next big-time college athletics brand. UB Athletics has unprecedented potential and, perhaps more importantly, the backing and support of a great administration.”
Hired in 2012, White immediately launched a strategic plan to enhance the national profile of the UB athletics program and compete for championships within the Mid-American Conference (MAC). His vision for extending the reputation and market reach of UB Athletics focuses on leveraging UB’s status as the largest public university in New York State — SUNY’s flagship institution — and its prominence as one of the nation’s top research universities.
Since arriving at UB, White has added experience and depth to UB’s coaching staff by hiring Bobby Hurley (men’s basketball), Felisha Legette-Jack (women’s basketball), Sandy Calfo (rowing), Stu Riddle (men’s soccer), John Stutzman (wrestling), Reed Sunahara (volleyball) and Trena Peel (softball).
Tripathi noted that White’s administration has made classroom achievement a top priority. UB student-athletes posted five straight semesters of an average GPA above 3.0 — the only five times that has occurred in the history of the department. The spring of 2014 was the highest ever — 3.07. UB also had 11 teams above a 3.0 and 17 teams above a 2.8.
White also is overseeing capital projects that will create new, as well as upgraded, facilities for the athletics department. These include the $1 million Murchie Family Football Center — dedicated in July 2013 — and a recently upgraded men’s and women’s basketball hallway in Alumni Arena.
Also in the works is the first capital project in the 20-year history of UB Stadium. A new state-of-the-art sports medicine center recently was completed and plans call for a new East Club that will provide fans with new amenities and the construction of the new football headquarters, which will be funded by a $3 million commitment from the Murchie family.
With the goal of increasing the fan base and enhancing revenues, White in 2013 introduced a priority-seating program for football with a new commitment to creating a fun and vibrant fan experience on football game days. This includes an upgraded Stampede Square fan interaction zone, corporate village tailgating area and a UB Football Tailgate Concert Series that brings national recording artists to campus for pregame concerts.
The success of the new game day experience led to a record-breaking attendance for UB football last year, with an average paid attendance of 22,736 — 2,000 more than any other school in the MAC.
Under White’s leadership, for the first time in school history, a UB sports radio network spans across New York. It is anchored by ESPN 1520, a 50,000-watt station that can be heard from New England to South Carolina and throughout New York.
UB athletics broadcasts are supplemented by new radio partnerships in the Rochester, Albany and New York City markets. Locally, UB Athletics secured a partnership with local NBC affiliate WGRZ Channel 2 as the official television home for UB athletics.