Even Penn State’s Sandy Barbour is adding some hardware to the trophy case this year.
The Penn State athletic director became one of four recipients Thursday for the Under Armour AD of the Year Award, as decided by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics.
She joins three other FBS athletic directors to earn the honor for 2016-2017: Boo Coorigan (Army), Jay Jacobs (Auburn) and Blake James (Miami).
“I’m humbled and honored to receive this award from my peers,” Barbour said in a news release. “This award is also a recognition of the great work that has come before me to build a remarkable foundation for success.
“Most importantly, it is a validation of the spectacular work that our entire team does on behalf of Penn State student-athletes. It honors every staff member, coach and student-athlete that toils daily on behalf of Penn State; a recognition of our outstanding team that is committed to comprehensive excellence.”
The four award-winning athletic directors will be honored June 13 at the James J. Corbett Memorial Award Luncheon during the 52nd annual NACDA Convention in Orlando, Fla.
Behind Barbour, Penn State set a school record in the fall by having 24 sports teams earn at least a 3.0 GPA. (Some 223 student-athletes posted at least a 3.5 GPA last fall to make the dean’s list.) Athletically, the Nittany Lions were ranked No. 7 last season in the Learfield Directors’ Cup, which essentially measures the entirety of the success of a school’s athletic program.
“Leading a Division I program is a complex endeavor, and Sandy manages it with intelligence, enthusiasm and success,” Penn State President Eric Barron said.
In a little more than two years as AD, Barbour has overseen three Penn State national championships (women’s soccer, women’s volleyball, wrestling) and 16 conference championships and tournament titles.
Her tenure started on Aug. 18, 2014.