Video: BREAKING- MUW Announces New Athletic Director
COLUMBUS, Miss. — With 15 years of experience in athletics and higher education, Jason M. Trufant, currently senior associate director of athletics for administration at Dowling College, will become the director of athletics at Mississippi University for Women. He will begin his new duties June 6.
Dr. Rita Hinton, professor emerita and interim faculty athletic representative, chaired the search. “The search committee carefully considered a very highly qualified pool of candidates,” she said. “We narrowed the pool to 10 and conducted Skype interviews with seven. All of the individuals on our top 10 list had the background to become a successful athletic director. However, we wanted to be sure that the person eventually hired would be a perfect fit for our university. We wanted someone with the necessary experience but also someone who would understand our emphasis on excellence in academics.”
The committee succeeded in its goals, said President Jim Borsig. “Jason Trufant impressed us with his energy, his focus on academics as a primary role for the student-athlete and his enthusiasm about rolling up his sleeves and getting started building our programs. He brings experience and a wide knowledge of athletic programs to the position, and I am confident he will contribute greatly to enhancing our student experience.”
Trufant, who participated in Division I athletics as a student, has coached at the junior college and Division III levels, and has held several administrative positions at Division II schools. In his current role at Dowling College in Long Island, N.Y., he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of compliance, game operations, fund raising and marketing, sport supervision, team and departmental budgets and purchasing.
He formerly served as associate director of athletics at Molloy College and as head assistant baseball coach at Frostburg State University, and he has served as head baseball coach at the State University of New York at Cobleskill.
Currently, he is one of 12 participants selected nationally to be part of the one-year NCAA Pathway Program, designed to elevate those in senior-level athletics administration positions to the next step as athletic director. They are chosen to equally represent NCAA Divisions I, II and III.
Active in NCAA committees, he is chair of baseball for the East Coast Conference and a member of the NCAA Baseball Rules Committee that develops the playing rules for NCAA baseball across all three divisions. He also has served on the Division II NCAA National Baseball Committee and chaired the East Region, serving as administrator for NCAA regional competition.
He holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University at Albany, State University of New York and a master’s in human performance from Frostburg State University.
“I am extremely honored and excited to become the new athletic director at The W,” Trufant said. “Having the opportunity to reinstate athletics at this tradition-rich institution is a tremendous privilege and I am thrilled to become a part of The W family. It has always been my career goal to make an impact on the lives of our students and staff by creating a positive learning experience through sport. I want to thank President Borsig, the search committee and the campus community for this opportunity and I look forward to building a dedicated and consistent culture of success in the classroom and on the fields of play.”
The W last had athletic programs in 2002, when the university fielded softball, basketball volleyball and tennis teams.
The athletic director search was coordinated by Athletics Staffing and Consultants, based in Atlanta, Ga., and led by Dr. Kurt Patberg.