Monday, September 18, 2006
Basketball coach heads up Athletics' capital campaignOakland University Men’s Basketball Head Coach Greg Kampe has been named by the university to head up a $55 million capital campaign to support OU Athletics. In a related move, Associate Athletic Director Tracy Huth will take over the Interim Athletic Director role filled by Kampe since September 2005. Both appointments were effective Sept. 15.
“We are excited to announce the fundraising campaign for OU athletics,” said Oakland University President Gary D. Russi. “And, I could not be more confident in the success of the campaign with Greg Kampe at the helm. Coach Kampe personifies OU Athletics — he has fostered his players’ success on the court, in the classroom and on two occasions in an interim leadership capacity for the entire department. I fully expect him to bring this campaign across the finish line ahead of schedule. Oakland University is in the midst of a major capital fundraising campaign. Athletics’ needs will now be added to those of the university in general.
“We realize the impact intercollegiate athletics can have in raising the regional and national profile of the university in general,” Russi said. “Our run in the NCAA tournament the past two years with our men’s and women’s basketball teams clearly shows that. So, we want to continue to make progress through adding improvements to our athletic facilities, while not missing a beat with the competitive success of our teams.”
Huth inherits the department leadership role from Kampe, who has served in an interim AD capacity on two occasions — in 1994-95 when he helped initiate OU’s move from Division II to Division I and the design of the new Athletics Center, and his recent stint, which has included numerous team championships, the addition of men’s and women’s track and field and a makeover of the O’rena this summer.
“Coach Kampe and Tracy Huth have teamed over the past year to take the department to new heights as our Division I program grows and matures. I have no doubt they will continue this progress in their new capacities,” Russi said.
Huth led Oakland’s recent successful re-accreditation as a Division I program by the NCAA and headed up Oakland’s hosting of the NCAA men’s basketball regional at the Palace earlier this year.
“I have been fortunate to work with coaches and staff who are good at what they do,” Kampe said. “I just got out of their way and let them do it. Tracy will do a great job in leading the department now, which will give me time to get my team ready for the season and allow me to devote my extra time to fundraising, which is so important to all of us. I have enjoyed my various roles over the years and have been happy to serve whenever the university has called on me.”
The Grizzlies face one of the tougher schedules in Division I men’s basketball this fall before the Mid-Continent Conference league schedule kicks in, including Michigan State, UCLA, Arkansas and Pittsburgh.
OU is in the middle of its fall schedule – including soccer and volleyball action. Both men’s and women’s soccer teams have won Mid Con titles in recent years.
“Having been an OU athlete, coach and administrator, this is a real honor for me to serve as Interim AD,” Huth said. “We have tremendous programs, we just dedicated an academic skills center and a new Grizzlies mascot statue last week, and we still have a whole year ahead of us. I am fortunate to follow Greg’s lead. He has done a great job over the past 12 months.”
The search for a permanent athletic director is expected to get under way within the next few months, with a goal of filling the position by Fall 2007.
For more information on Oakland University Athletics, visit the Athletics Web site.