Highland Heights (FOX19) - Northern Kentucky University President Geoffrey Mearns
announced today that Ken Bothof has been named the school's Director of
Athletics, effective Aug. 19, 2013.
comes to NKU from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, where he has served as
athletic director since 2002. Bothof's tenure at Green Bay has been marked by
great success both on the field and in the classroom, as well as tremendous
growth in support for the school's 16 athletic programs.
"This is an exciting time to be a part of this university and its
athletics program, and we're excited to welcome Ken," Mearns said.
"What he has accomplished at Green Bay is very impressive. He has positioned
the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay for great success both within the Horizon
League and on the national stage. Our transition to Division I has gone more
smoothly than we anticipated. With Ken on board, I know that our best days are
ahead of us."
Green Bay, Bothof was instrumental in raising $11 million in private funds to
complete a $33 million renovation and expansion of the Phoenix Sports Center.
He also developed an outdoor facilities plan that includes new soccer and
softball facilities, as well as expanded recreational and intramural
his leadership, the Green Bay women's basketball team has won nine straight
Horizon League titles and three NCAA Tournament first-round games; the
program's first Sweet Sixteen appearance was in 2011. Men's basketball posted
consecutive 20-win seasons and postseason appearances in 2009 and 2010, while
men's soccer, volleyball and softball each earned their first trip to the NCAA
Division I Tournament. During his tenure, Phoenix student-athletes have earned
a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher in each of the last 23
semesters. Green Bay is one of only two Horizon League schools to be ranked in
the top 100 in the NCSA Athletic Recruiting Collegiate Power Rankings, which
recognizes academic and athletic success and student-athlete graduation rates.
Bothof's tenure, annual contributions to the Phoenix Fund have more than
tripled and membership in the fund has quadrupled. Ticket revenues and corporate
sponsorships have increased dramatically, and he also negotiated a five-year
contract with Nelligan Sports Marketing for the development of radio rights and
want to thank President Mearns and the university community for the confidence
they have placed in me to lead NKU during this exciting time in the
university's history," Bothof said. "I look forward to working
through this transition. There is a great opportunity for success in the future
of Division I athletics. The move to Division I is a big move. It's a big step
up, and it's going to be challenging and exciting all at the same time."
has also served as chair of the Horizon League Finance Committee and chaired
the Horizon League Executive Committee. He serves as the conference's
representative to the Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association Executive
Committee. Bothof is on the YMCA Board of Directors and is a member of the
Downtown Green Bay Rotary Club.
to his tenure at Green Bay, he served as associate athletic director for
external operations at Saint Louis University, where he oversaw marketing and
promotions, fundraising, corporate sponsorships, event management and ticket
sales while also supervising three sports. Bothof served as associate athletic
director and then senior associate athletic director at Idaho State University
from 1990-95, where he developed corporate sponsorship plans and marketing
programs, served as compliance coordinator and NCAA certification coordinator,
and supervised 12 sports. He began his career at San Jose State University,
where he served as assistant athletic director.
replaces Mike Cusask, who has served as NKU's interim athletic director since
April 15, 2013.
athletics department is set to begin its second year at the NCAA Division I
level. A member of the Atlantic Sun Conference, NKU sponsors 15 intercollegiate
sports - baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country,
men's and women's golf, men's and women's soccer, women's softball, men's and
women's tennis, men's and women's indoor/outdoor track and field and
year's historic first season in Division I brought numerous highlights. The NKU
volleyball team posted a record of 25-7, including a 12-6 mark in the A-Sun.
The Norse won championships in each of their four regular-season tournaments
and defeated A-Sun regular season champion Florida Gulf Coast on the road.
NKU's 25 wins were the most ever by a volleyball program in its first year of
reclassification from Division II to Division I. The women's basketball team
finished 15-13 and earned a berth in the Women's Basketball Invitational
postseason tournament. The Norse also defeated A-Sun Tournament champion
Stetson University. The men's basketball team led the Atlantic Sun in home
attendance with an average of 3,551 per game. The Norse drew a regular-season
record 6,719 for their final home game of the season. Senior Eshaunte Jones averaged
15.7 points per game and earned First Team All-Atlantic Sun Conference honors.
impressive as any of the on-field success, however, was the fact that NKU
student athletes posted a grade point average of 3.05 in the fall and 3.03 in
the spring. In fact, the school's student athletes have posted a cumulative GPA
of 3.0 or greater during six of the last seven semesters.
Athletics also launched a $6 million Go Gold fundraising campaign last year,
and has raised nearly $3 million toward that goal.
"The support we have seen from our campus and our community has
been outstanding," Mearns said. "To lead the conference in home
basketball attendance our first year speaks to the level of commitment our
students, alumni, faculty, staff and community have for our program. Our fans
were patient as we were deliberate in reclassifying to ensure we could be as
competitive as possible at the highest level. Our Go Gold campaign was designed
to ensure that we remain competitive. Ken will be an integral part of that
said he is encouraged by the sense of collective enthusiasm for Division I
athletics at NKU. "I am extremely excited to have the opportunity to work
at an institution that supports the complete student-athlete experience,"
Bothof said. "I look forward to working with the entire university
community to ensure that our student-athletes experience success in the
classroom and in competition."
earned his bachelor of arts in education from Buena Vista University, where he
competed in baseball and basketball. The Slayton, Minn., native is married to
Carrie and has two children - Tyson and Kendra.
Wednesday, August 20 2014 1:35 PM EDT2014-08-20 17:35:47 GMT
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