May 28, 2009
NORMAN, Okla. -
With a Heisman Trophy winner, the recipient of both the Wooden and Naismith Awards and seven Big 12 Players of the Year, it has been a banner year for Oklahoma's Athletics Department. The leader of that department, Joe Castiglione, added to the hardware Thursday night when he was named Athletics Director of the Year at the Sports Business Awards in New York City.
Several great individual efforts led to team success too with the football team playing for the national title, the women's basketball team reaching the Final Four and the men's basketball team advancing to the Elite Eight. Four Sooner teams won Big 12 Championships.
"We couldn't be happier for Joe," said OU Head Football Coach Bob Stoops. "The effort he puts forth on behalf of this university, the coaches and the student-athletes is incredible. He's a tremendous administrator, but he's also a great friend to so many of us here. It's gratifying to see him rewarded nationally because others are acknowledging what we have felt about him for a long time.
"President (David) Boren has made a lot of important decisions that resulted in growth and improvement at OU. Hiring Joe was certainly one of them. He deserves a lot of credit too for getting Joe in place here and in creating the environment that we all enjoy."
Typically, Castiglione deflected the credit.
"When you work with people like President Boren, our Board of Regents, our coaches, our athletics department staff and our student-athletes, you never feel worthy of something like this," he said. "This award reflects the collective efforts of many. I am honored to serve at a great university and really feel that I accepted the honor on behalf of the university."
Castiglione has been a frequent honoree. In October 2004, the Bobby Dodd Foundation named him Athletics Director of the Year.
In 2003, he was inducted into the National Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators Hall of Fame. In June 2001, he received the General Robert R. Neyland Athletic Director Award for lifetime achievement from the All-American Football Foundation. The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) named him Central Region AD of the Year in 2000.
The OU Athletics Department was recognized in 2007 with the prestigious PRISM Award, which annually recognizes one Division I intercollegiate athletics department that demonstrates industry-leading excellence and innovation in sports management.
Castiglione was hired at Oklahoma in April of 1998.
Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily recognized Castiglione at its awards banquet Thursday night. The other finalists were Sandy Barbour of California, Jeremy Foley of Florida and Joel Maturi of Minnesota.