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First pitch for A.D. candidate heard

Kurt McGuffin said he needed one picture to prove why he is a worthy candidate to fill the Athletic Director position on campus.

McGuffin flashed a picture on his powerpoint which showed himself, his wife and two sons sitting on a park bench. He said he is a family man and his values will lead Missouri Western in a positive direction.

The first of four presentations was heard on Thursday afternoon in the Griffon Indoor Sports Complex to a room filled with coaches and media. McGuffin, assistant athletic director of athletics development at the University of Colorado, stood in front of everybody and showed he wasn’t afraid to explain his reasons for wanting to come to Western.

“We have to do a better job so the community knows we are doing our job,” McGuffin said. “I want Missouri Western to be St. Joseph’s team, not just [Western’s].”

McGuffin said that he would like to be the Athletic Director of a Division II school because he sees the difference between the two divisions, and that Division II sports are more into student-athletes than just athletes or money.

“I don’t care what level you’re at, relationships are the bigger factor,” McGuffin said. “Sometimes the bigger you get, the less focussed you are on what is important.”

McGuffin said student-athletes are the reason why he has a job and he misses being apart of them more. He went on to say money creates more problems, but if Western can have a good budget with better facilities, they will make the next step that people are craving.

The Wichita State graduate said he does want success in sports as well as in the classroom. He wants athletes to graduate with a diploma, a championship ring and a smile.

McGuffin has a bachelor of science in education, received at Kansas State in 1996, and three years later received a master of science in education at Wichita State. He has been involved in the Big XII for the past decade, as he was the Assistant Director of Athletics for Development at Kansas State before taking his current position at Colorado, which he has worked for the past two years. If he is employed at Western, he wants the students to be prepared for life after college.

“When students go out into that work force, and they get knocked down, [it’s our job] they get back up,” McGuffin said. “Some of them are still young kids that we have to continue to beat that home on. When [students] get out there, it’s going to be rough, but now they’ll have the tools to succeed.”

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