Steve Watson named as athletic director

Loyola has named Steve Watson of St. Bonaventure University as the new athletic director, according to an email sent to the Loyola community by Senior Vice President for Administrative Services Thomas Kelly.

“When I first spoke with Tom Kelly about Loyola, I knew very quickly that this could be the perfect fit,” Watson said in a press release. “It is a great school, in a great city, with great people. Much like the Atlantic 10, the Missouri Valley is an outstanding conference with a reputation for high-level basketball. I cannot thank Loyola President and CEO Michael J. Garanzini, S.J. and Tom enough for this opportunity and I am really looking forward to getting started.”

Father Garanzini also offered his thoughts on the hiring.

“Steve Watson brings tremendous experience and enthusiasm to Loyola,” he said. “He impressed us with his ability to build and sustain a successful intercollegiate athletic program, especially in basketball. We look to him to lead our University efforts to engage and energize the campus and the community in our Ramblers’ success.”

Since 2007, Watson served as the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at St. Bonaventure University in New York. During his time there, the Bonnies reached their best ever Academic Progress rate and head basketball coach Mark Schmidt was hired. Under Schmidt’s coaching, the program won the Atlantic-10 for the first time and earned an NCAA tournament berth.

Prior to St. Bonaventure, Watson worked in Eastern Michigan University’s Athletic Department and at University of Dayton where he was director of marketing and promotions.

Watson will be replacing interim Athletic Director Susan Malisch, who has held the position since May after M. Grace Calhoun left in March.

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Ashley Iannantone is a senior biochemistry major with minors in neuroscience, Spanish, and biostatistics. A self-proclaimed foodie with a passion for journalism, this is her fourth year working for The PHOENIX and third year in the A&E section. When she's not hunkering down with a bowl of pasta, you can find her volunteering at St. Joseph Hospital or running along the lake shore path (so that she can eat more pasta).

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