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UB Athletic Director Danny White Extended to 2019

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Say what you will about #NYBI and the White Death, but it's tough to argue that UB Athletics is worse off today than it was two and a half years ago when Danny White was hired to take over as Athletic Director for the UConn-bound Warde Manuel.

White's success in leadership was recognized by UB today as President Satish Tripathi announced that the AD's contract has been extended by five years to 2019.

White's most notable action as top dog at UB has been the aggressive rebranding campaign known as #NYBI - the New York Bulls Initiative. Through NYBI, White believes that UB can leverage itself to the recognition it should already enjoy as the largest, most comprehensive public university in the State of New York competing at the highest level of athletics across 18 varsity sports.

The NYBI has received some pushback, as many are concerned that the branding change will rob the school of its Buffalo identity. Ultimately, however, money talks, and in the 2013-2014 athletic year UB led the MAC in football attendance by more than 2,000 fans per game and saw a noticeable uptick in basketball season ticket purchases.

The NYBI is more than just the logo on the field and the butts in the seats, however, as key parts of the initiative have expanded UB's connection with local businesses through record numbers of corporate partnerships and enhanced the gameday tailgating experience during football Saturdays. White has also overseen an expansion in the department's media reach: UB football can now be heard on radio stations across New York State and both Jeff Quinn and Bobby Hurley have weekly in-season TV programs on local NBC affiliate WGRZ.The added revenue from the NYBI is already funding improved facilities as part of the department's master plan as UB moves into the future:

UB Facility Improvement - The High Priority Project Breakdown - Bull Run

UB Facility Improvement - The Low Priority Project Breakdown - Bull Run

Debate surrounding the NYBI aside, UB has improved nearly across the board on the field. White has overseen an incredible amount of turnover in the coaching ranks, as more than half of UB's teams are under different leadership than in May 2012. Demanding that every UB team compete for MAC Championships, White has hired a combination of experienced leaders with experience at top programs (Felisha Legette-Jack, Reed Sunahara) and promising young coaches who enjoyed elite playing careers in their sport (Bobby Hurley, Trena Peel).

In brief, 2013-14 saw the "big three" of football and men's and women's basketball all improve their win total over the preceding year, while baseball made a deep run to the MAC semifinals, softball made a deeper run to the MAC finals, and both swimming and track saw multiple student-athletes compete at the national level.

These coaches have held their student-athletes to a higher standard in the classroom as well. From the UB release:

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.

Congrats to Director White. We look forward to five more years of even more success!

For the full UB release, visit the link below

UB Athletics Director Daniel J. White Receives Contract Extension