Brian White officially introduced as new athletic director in press conference

White is the sixth-full time athletic director at FAU

Photo+courtesy+of+FAU+Athletics

Photo courtesy of FAU Athletics

Matt Brown , Contributing Writer

FAU’s sixth full-time athletic director Brian White was officially introduced this morning at a press conference in front crowd of nearly 100 people.  

White’s hiring, announced back on March 3 in a press release, ended a nearly two month search after former AD Pat Chun left in January to take over the same position at Washington State.

He comes over after spending the past couple of years at Missouri. While there, he served as senior associate athletics director in 2015 before changing positions the following year, becoming deputy athletics director for external relations. He also served as the sports administrator for men’s basketball and football at the school.

Heading the search for University President John Kelly was consultant Rick Chryst, former commissioner of the Mid-American Conference.

Kelly also sought the advice of former Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley, and current Clemson athletic director Dan Radakovich.

Kelly believes he found a “winner”, “strong family man”, and someone who “connects deeply with the community” and that White will “take the university with him.”  

In his opening statements he also pointed to how “thrilled” he was with the choice. Not due to the fact of when and how the hiring took place but because of “the family behind the man we are hiring.”

Some of the family behind White were his brother Danny White, and his father Kevin White who are both current athletic directors at UCF and Duke respectively.

White pointed out that while there are some differences between FAU and UCF, he sees what his brother has done there as a “good model for what we can build here.”

White emphasized that his strategic plan for the university will be in line with the vision put forth by Kelly of “Unbridled Ambition.”

The culture he wishes to bring and the first thing he plans on implementing is to win but to do it the right way. While what is considered a win or success will be “negotiable” for each program the “right part will not be negotiable.” He describes right in an acronym he created as “Respect, Integrity, Gratitude, Humility, and Teamwork.”

He also placed importance on the continued work on the Schmidt Family Complex for Academic and Athletic Excellence.

“Facilities is a huge component and they are already good, but our goal is to make them great,” he said. “I think for where we are in our growth potential for facilities is really exciting.”

White has appointments set up over the next two weeks to meet with all department heads and head coaches.

While White has not yet had the opportunity to meet with head basketball coach Michael Curry, who his going into the fifth year of his six-year contract after finishing 12-18 this past season. He says he has “heard great things about him” and he would like to “sit down with him and really try to get an understanding of this place.”

White previously met with head football coach Lane Kiffin, who was not in attendance.

During the conversation, White “got the impression” that Kiffin wants to be here long term and that “he really loves FAU and believes in the future of FAU.”

Keeping Kiffin is a “huge priority” to White and he said the department was “going to do the best we can.”

The 33-year old first-time head athletic director has signed a five-year contract.

The University Press made a public records request on the official terms of White’s five-year deal but did not receive a response as of publication time.  

Matt Brown is a contributing writer with the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @mattyb407.