Ripple named NACDA Under Armour Athletics Director of Year


Cleveland – Dodge City Community College Director of Athletics Jacob Ripple has been named Under Armour Athletics Director of the year, as announced by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) earlier today. 

The ADOY Award highlights the efforts of athletics directors at all levels for their commitment and positive contributions to student-athletes, campuses and their surrounding communities. The award spans seven divisions (NCAA FBS, FCS, Division I-AAA, II, III, NAIA/Other Four-Year Institutions and Junior College/Community Colleges). Winners will be recognized June 9 during NACDA’s 55th Annual Convention at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“The future of our industry continues to look bright with athletics leaders like these at the helm of departments across the country,” said Bob Vecchione, NACDA Chief Executive Officer. “Out of our 28 ADOY winners, 22 are receiving this honor for the first time in their careers. It is exciting and inspiring to see the new faces coming up through the ranks and earning well-deserved recognition for their efforts on their campuses.”

“The Athletics Director of the Year Award acknowledges the leadership and positive influence top athletics directors have had at their respective institutions across all levels,” said Brian Cummings, Under Armour’s vice president of North America sports marketing. “Under Armour is proud to partner with NACDA to honor those individuals who set the standard in guiding their student-athletes through the on-going journey to be better.”
All NACDA-member directors of athletics in the United States, Canada and Mexico who met the criteria were eligible for the award. Among the criteria were service as an AD for a minimum of five consecutive years; demonstration of commitment to higher education and student-athletes; continuous teamwork, loyalty and excellence; and the ability to inspire individuals or groups to high levels of accomplishments. Additionally, each AD’s institution must have passed a compliance check through its appropriate governing body (i.e., NCAA, NAIA, etc.), in which the institution could not have been on probation or cited for a lack of institutional control during the tenure of the current athletics director.
Nominators were NACDA-member directors of athletics, institutional presidents and conference commissioners, as well as other respected intercollegiate athletics administrators. Special Divisional Selection Committees composed of current and former directors of athletics, current and former commissioners and other key athletics administrators voted on nominees for the award. A complete listing of Selection Committee members can be found on NACDA’s website at

Please help us in congratulating Jacob on such a prestigious award!


Winners of the 2019-20 Under Armour AD of the Year Awards are: 
Winner Institution
  Football Bowl Subdivision
Bubba Cunningham University of North Carolina
Doug Gillin Appalachian State University
Rick Hart Southern Methodist University
Mack Rhoades Baylor University
  Football Championship Subdivision
Mark Jackson Villanova University
Robert Scalise Harvard University
Neil Sullivan University of Dayton
Lynn Thompson Bethune-Cookman University
  Division I-AAA
Amanda Braun University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Philip Hutcheson Lipscomb University
Bill Scholl Marquette University
Steve Watson Loyola University Chicago
  Division II
Jim Johnson Pittsburg State University
Laura Liesman Georgian Court University
Tim McMurray Texas A&M University-Commerce
Lindsay Reeves University of North Georgia
  Division III
Dana Harmon Worcester Polytechnic Institute
James Miller North Central College
Craig Poisson Springfield College
Laurie Turner Pacific Lutheran University
Brett Simpson Loyola University New Orleans
Thomas Smith Missouri Baptist University
Debbie Warren Indiana Tech
Drew Watson Southeastern University
  Junior/Community College
Joe Jennum Mt. San Antonio College
Jacob Ripple Dodge City Community College
Doug Spiwak Harper College
Troy Tucker Northampton Community College