A.D. Danny White; discussion thread

#1

Coach Jumper

"the right words"
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#1
So as to give an alternate spot for discussion of Danny White and hopefully to divert this subject matter from the recruiting/transfer threads I am starting this thread.

Hopefully people will leave the recruiting/transfer threads to that subject matter and have their opinions and discussions re Mr. White here...

I will begin with my own wrongly placed last post: (edited)
IMO,,,DW, in hiring outside of the Summitt coaching tree has opened a door that has never been opened.
And in hiring an "unproven in D1", he has taken a perfect shot

If Coach Kim fails half of the fans "expected it" and he is unscathed and can replace her without looking for a UT tie.....If she succeeds he looks like a genius.....If he had hired a "big name" initially and they failed he would have caught hell for his move.

As it is if Coach Kim does fail (And I do not believe she will),,,he has already opened the door for a "big name" outside of the Summitt tree, without repercussions and would have ample time to look for a big name replacement for next season

If this WAS his thinking,,,DW has taken the perfect shot
I was neither a fan or foe of DW before this,,, But this has made me much more of a supporter of him
 
#3
#3
Hey,Pat wasn't a proven coach,and became a legend,not only in vols minds but women's basketball world wide. Who knows Kim,may do the same.
Kim is certainly cut from a different mold
And Danny must have seen this, judging by the seemingly quick decision to take a chance on her

And from how quickly she has gotten things done so far,,,I think I see it too
 
#4
#4
So as to give an alternate spot for discussion of Danny White and hopefully to divert this subject matter from the recruiting/transfer threads I am starting this thread.

Hopefully people will leave the recruiting/transfer threads to that subject matter and have their opinions and discussions re Mr. White here...

I will begin with my own wrongly placed last post: (edited)
Now you have taken all the fun out of it..........HA !
 
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#8
#8
Since the thread is about him,,,might as well paste his bio:
PERSONAL INFORMATION
Full Name:
Dr. Daniel J. White
Birthdate: Oct. 28, 1979
Hometown: New Orleans, La.
Education: Notre Dame, 2002
Wife: Shawn
Children: Aidan, Molly, Caitlin, James

EXPERIENCE

1998-2000: Towson, Men's Basketball Student-Athlete
2000-02: Notre Dame, Men's Basketball Student-Athlete
2004-05: Ohio, Men's Basketball Director of Operations
2005-06: Ohio, Men's Basketball Assistant Coach
2006-07: Northern Illinois, Assistant AD for Development
2007-09: Fresno State, Associate AD for Development
2009-12: Ole Miss, Senior Associate AD/UMAA Foundation Executive Director
2012-15: Buffalo, Director of Athletics
2015-21: UCF, Vice President & Director of Athletics
2021-: Tennessee, Vice Chancellor & Director of Athletics

TENNESSEE CHAMPIONSHIPS

SEC (9)
2021 - Men's Tennis Tournament
2021 - Women's Soccer Tournament
2022 - Women's Swimming & Diving
2022 - Men's Basketball Tournament
2022 - Baseball Regular Season
2022 - Baseball Tournament
2023 - Softball Regular Season
2023 - Softball Tournament
2024 - Men's Basketball Regular Season

"YEAR IN REVIEW" FEATURES

2021-22 Tennessee Year in Review
2022-23 Tennessee Year in Review

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING ABOUT DANNY WHITE

Danny White’s innovative and forward-thinking approach to the rapidly evolving landscape of intercollegiate athletics primed University of Tennessee Chancellor Donde Plowman to name him Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics on Jan. 21, 2021.

Danny White’s innovative and forward-thinking approach to the rapidly evolving landscape of intercollegiate athletics primed University of Tennessee Chancellor Donde Plowman to name him Vice Chancellor/Director of Athletics on Jan. 21, 2021.

Boasting a literal lifetime of experience in the industry, White oversaw a period of unprecedented competitive, academic and service excellence at the University of Central Florida from 2015-21. Prior to that, White served as the AD at Buffalo from 2012-15.

“Danny White is an innovative leader in college athletics with a strong track record in recruiting and developing leaders,” Plowman said. “He brings the combination of winning attitude, competitive drive and dedication to integrity and academics that we are looking for.”

White’s departmental successes have earned him numerous awards—a Sports Business Journal 40 Under 40 honoree in multiple years, a spot on the Orlando Business Journal 40 Under 40 list, multiple selections as one of the 50 Most Powerful People in Orlando by Orlando Magazine and he was a finalist for the 2018 and 2023 SBJ Athletics Director of the Year award.

A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, White was named a NACDA Athletics Director of the Year in the spring of 2019. In 2018, SBJ named him one of the six most influential people in sports business, while Orlando Magazine tabbed him as the area’s most powerful person in sports. In 2020, Stadium rated White No. 4 nationally on its list of athletics directors based on the combined success of his coaching hires in football and men’s basketball.

IMMEDIATE IMPACT AT TENNESSEE
“Danny’s leadership, vision and record of sustained achievement will no doubt effectively guide the future of the University of Tennessee athletics program,” Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey said when White was hired at Tennessee.

Six days after he was named AD at Tennessee, White announced the hiring of Josh Heupel as the Volunteers' 27th head football coach. Heupel had spent the previous three years working alongside White as head coach at UCF, where he compiled an impressive 28-8 (20-5 AAC) record.

In just his second year leading the Tennessee football program, Heupel guided the Volunteers to an 8-0 start, 11 total wins and an NY6 triumph over Clemson at the Capital One Orange Bowl. Heupel’s record-setting offense propelled Tennessee to No. 1 status in the first edition of the 2023 CFP rankings, and it yielded a Biletnikoff Award winner (receiver Jalin Hyatt) as well as a fifth-place finisher in the Heisman Trophy race (quarterback Hendon Hooker).

The Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in the summer of 2023 recognized Plowman, White and Heupel collectively as “Tennesseans of the Year.”

The football program’s emphatic resurgence in 2022 ignited a wick of team success that wove through Tennessee’s entire athletic department, as a dozen other UT teams followed suit with national top-16 finishes during 2022-23. That comprehensive success led to the Big Orange earning their second consecutive SEC All-Sports Trophy while becoming only the second school ever to sweep both the men’s and women’s all-sports standings.

Equally as impressive, Tennessee followed up a 13th-place finish in the 2021-22 LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup standings with an all-time best finish of No. 6 in the 2022-23 Directors’ Cup race.

After the baseball program swept the SEC regular-season and tournament titles in 2022, softball did the same in 2023. UT also became the only school to win a New Year's Six bowl game, advance both its men's and women's basketball teams to the Sweet Sixteen and send both its softball and baseball teams to the College World Series in the same academic year.

Tennessee is the only school ever to have hosted ESPN College GameDay for football, men's basketball and women’s basketball all-time—and it hosted all three versions of the show in the same athletic year in 2022-23. Similarly, Tennessee also made history in 2023 as the only school ever to have both a softball and women’s basketball game aired on ABC in the same year.

White’s winning culture has extended proportionately across genders, as Tennessee has captured four men’s and four women’s SEC team championships during White’s AD tenure. Vols have claimed 20 individual/relay SEC titles during that span, with Lady Vols racking up 15.

Prior to White’s arrival on Rocky Top, Tennessee won eight total SEC championships over the previous 10-year span.

Academically, the Spring 2023 semester saw Tennessee’s more than 550 student-athletes achieve a cumulative grade-point average of 3.38—its highest ever recorded. For the first time ever, all 16 sport programs earned a team GPA of at least 3.0. Under White’s leadership, Tennessee’s student-athletes have raised the all-sport GPA each semester – setting all new school records each time.

In addition to football, White has led national searches and made head coaching hires for Tennessee women’s golf (Diana Cantú), soccer (Joe Kirt), track & field (Duane Ross), cross country/distance (Sean Carlson) and rowing (Kim Cupini).

Led by a leadership team handpicked by White, the Tennessee Fund in FY23 reported its second consecutive record year across multiple fundraising metrics. For the fiscal year that ended on June 30 (FY23), the Tennessee Fund team set records for fundraising total ($131,450,717), cash receipts ($72,821,769) and total donors (28,387).

Since White launched the My All Campaign in the summer of 2021, the Tennessee Fund has secured commitments totaling over $419 million, 84 percent of the campaign’s goal of raising $500 million by summer 2026.

In a unique move that proved wise and effective, White moved Tennessee’s outbound ticket sales efforts in-house. With a new structure and staff, the ticket sales staff generated more than $26 million in ticket revenue in 2022 and grew the football season-ticket base by 17 percent in one year. For the 2023 football season, all 70,500 season tickets were sold. The sellout figure emphatically eclipses the department's strategic plan goal of 61,000 by 9,500. The approaching 127th campaign of Volunteer football also saw a 96 percent season ticket renewal rate. In addition, Tennessee has sold over 9,000 new season tickets for 2023.

It marked the second time in the past 22 seasons that UT has sold out of its football season ticket inventory, last doing so in August 2016. The feat of selling out a 100,000-plus seat venue comes in an era of stadium downsizing across the country, further illustrating the passion of Vol Nation.

A pair of new premium-seating opportunities were introduced in Neyland Stadium during the 2022 football season—the Lower West Club and the North End Zone Social Deck (a White initiative). Both areas provided fans with a more modernized gameday experience. The 1,300-seat Lower West Club sold out quickly, while the North Social Deck sold out six of seven home games. Both new areas combined to generate more than $6 million in annual revenue (annual fund plus ticket sales).

The cumulative effect of the aforementioned initiatives and adjustments led to Tennessee Athletics forecasting its highest-ever operating revenue of over $200 million in FY23.

White has also spearheaded the modernization of two iconic Tennessee’s athletics venues – Neyland Stadium and Lindsey Nelson Stadium. Phase 1 of the historic Neyland Stadium renovation is budgeted for $337 million. The project aligns with Tennessee Athletics' stated goals of modernizing the fan and visitor experience through enhanced amenities and diversified seating options, improving fan safety and security and aligning stadium features and aesthetics with campus architectural standards.

Through a multi-year construction process, Lindsey Nelson Stadium will transform into one of the premier college baseball venues in the country with world-class player development areas, multiple new gates, increased seating capacity to approximately 7,600 fans, wider concourses, more concession stands and restrooms and new luxurious premium-seating offerings. The project budget totals $95.8 million.

KICKSTARTING A GRIDIRON SURGE
In White’s first football season as Tennessee’s AD, the Volunteers produced an explosive and exciting brand of football under first-year head coach Josh Heupel. Tennessee set eight single-season school records on the offensive side of the ball and ranked top-10 nationally in team tackles for loss. UT returned to the postseason for the TransPerfect Music City Bowl in Nashville, playing in front of the largest crowd in Nissan Stadium history.

Heupel in 2021 was named co-winner of the Steve Spurrier First-Year Coach Award and led the Vols to a strong showing in the postseason awards. Breakout quarterback Hendon Hooker, a Davey O'Brien Award semifinalist, cemented his status as one of the top signal callers in the FBS, passing for 2,945 yards and 31 touchdowns while only giving up three interceptions. Hooker shattered school records for single-season completion percentage (68.0) and passing efficiency (181.4).

The Vols took another huge step forward in 2022, breaking several program single-season records, including total points (599), points per game (46.1), total offense (6,832), yards per game (525.5) and passing touchdowns (38) while tying the record for rushing touchdowns (40). Tennessee totaled 11 wins for the first time since 2001.

The ascension of UCF football during White’s AD tenure there was nothing short of remarkable, and the entire college football world took notice.

UCF’s football program went from winless in 2015 to six victories and a bowl game appearance in 2016, White’s first full year in Orlando. The Knights improved even more in 2017, finishing the season as the only undefeated team in the nation. UCF finished that campaign 13-0 and capping the incredible run with a 34-27 victory over seventh-ranked Auburn in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

All told, UCF football posted a 47-15 record from 2016-20 with five bowl appearances and three 10-win seasons.

Throughout White’s five years of athletics oversight, the Knights made major improvements to their football gameday locker room and opened a revamped, multi-sport weight room and performance center. White also finalized and implemented facility enhancement plans for several other UCF programs.

AN INNOVATIVE EDGE
From the moment he arrived on Rocky Top, a point of emphasis for White was the development of a comprehensive five-year strategic plan for Tennessee Athletics. In July of 2022, that process yielded the Rise Glorious Strategic Plan, which serves as a very clear roadmap for accomplishing Tennessee Athletics’ mission of leading the way forward in all aspects of college sports.

Rise Glorious also established the department’s new vision statement: Deliver an unparalleled student-athlete experience fueled by the relentless pursuit of comprehensive excellence; be bold and innovative in our approach to recruiting and developing well-rounded graduates, championship-driven competitors and world-changing leaders.

Additionally, the plan established seven core values through which “Vols lead:” academic success; inclusive preeminence; honesty and integrity; competitive excellence; holistic health and well-being; and the power of Vol Nation.

During his leadership tenure at UCF, White established a unique relationship with Walt Disney World Resort that provided annual access to Disney for all Knights’ student-athletes. White also developed plans for McNamara Cove, an aquatic recovery facility, lazy river and pool adjacent to Spectrum Stadium that doubles as a year-round hospitality venue.

UCF secured football host-site privileges for an ESPN College GameDay broadcast—an honor traditionally reserved for football’s fraternity of powerhouse programs—in 2018, and 247Sports rated Knights’ home games fourth nationally in terms of home stadium experiences. Meanwhile, the Knights’ Fiesta Bowl meeting with LSU marked the 13th most-watched college game (8.471 million viewers) in 2018. White also played a key role in the marketing campaign to advance UCF as “Orlando’s Hometown Team.”

Other highlights of White’s UCF tenure included the athletics department bringing its multimedia rights and corporate partnerships in-house and an extended and improved apparel and shoe agreement with Nike. He also secured naming-rights deals for both the UCF football field and basketball court. The Knights in 2019 (for the first time) sold out their allotment of football season tickets at Spectrum Stadium, creating a waiting list and prompting potential stadium expansion plans.

"Danny's leadership, vision and record of sustained achievement will no doubt effectively guide the future of the University of Tennessee athletics program," Southeastern Conference Commissioner Greg Sankey said when White was hired at Tennessee.

RISING TO THE AD CHAIR
A former college basketball student-athlete at Towson and Notre Dame, White quickly ascended in the ranks of college athletics leadership. Prior to his first athletics director opportunity at Buffalo, he was senior associate athletics director at Ole Miss from 2009-12. He previously served two years as associate athletics director for development at Fresno State (2007-09) and one as assistant athletics director for development at Northern Illinois (2006-07).

Before pivoting to athletics administration, White spent one year as the director of basketball operations and another year as an assistant coach with the Ohio University men’s basketball program.

Click the following links to read highlights from White’s AD tenures at Buffalo (2012-15) and UCF (2015-21).

THE FAMILY BUSINESS
White graduated from Notre Dame in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He earned master’s degrees in both business administration and sports administration from Ohio University and completed a Ph.D. in higher education leadership from Ole Miss in 2016.

White comes from a family deeply involved in intercollegiate athletics. His father, Kevin, was the longtime vice president and director of athletics at Duke (and previously held that same role at Notre Dame, Arizona State, Tulane, Maine and Loras College). His brother, Michael, is the head men’s basketball coach at Georgia. His brother, Brian, is the vice president and director of athletics at Florida Atlantic.

"At every stop along the way, Danny has built, improved and creatively positioned athletics departments for academic and competitive excellence," NCAA Executive Vice President for Regulatory Affairs Stan Wilcox said. "His keen understanding of the importance of diversity and inclusion was instilled in him at an early age by his parents. Leadership is important. Success is built upon knowledge, vision and a relentless work ethic. Danny's record is a testament to the importance of these foundational leadership qualities."

Danny and his wife, Shawn, have four children: Aidan, Molly, Caitlin and James.
 
#10
#10
Except for the little "What the hell?" moment I had as he was stating his extremely high expectations for Kim's first season during her introduction, so far I have nothing but praises for Danny White's job performance.

I mean, she may have even WANTED that to be put out there like that (for extra motivation) for all we know, so I let that go. She does seem like the type who'd like that kind of challenge. Who knows?!

Anyway, White seems to me to be decent, personable, confident and driven to succeed. I get a strong sense that he genuinely loves his job and, in particular, being at Tennessee. I hope he continues to build on what he's done so far, which is already impressive.
 
#13
#13
So as to give an alternate spot for discussion of Danny White and hopefully to divert this subject matter from the recruiting/transfer threads I am starting this thread.

Hopefully people will leave the recruiting/transfer threads to that subject matter and have their opinions and discussions re Mr. White here...

I will begin with my own wrongly placed last post: (edited)

White has been the best athletic director that Tennessee has had since the eras of Bob Woodruff and Doug Dickey.
 
#14
#14
My main complaint with the AD is the cost increases. The common person like me who only spends 8k a year on tickets is having to decide if I should drop some of my tickets. I totally get a 10% or so increase per year but some sports are increasing 25% and baseball even doubling next year. I can't be the only one now having to trim back my spend due to the increases. If I just watched from TV I'd be fine.

I get it though if I can no longer afford some of my tickets, there will be someone who can.
 
#15
#15
My main complaint with the AD is the cost increases. The common person like me who only spends 8k a year on tickets is having to decide if I should drop some of my tickets. I totally get a 10% or so increase per year but some sports are increasing 25% and baseball even doubling next year. I can't be the only one now having to trim back my spend due to the increases. If I just watched from TV I'd be fine.

I get it though if I can no longer afford some of my tickets, there will be someone who can.

Don't believe the AD is the one with the final decision on the increases. He manages the athletic budget that is presented to the president and board members. There are other university costs involved also.
 
#16
#16
My main complaint with the AD is the cost increases. The common person like me who only spends 8k a year on tickets is having to decide if I should drop some of my tickets. I totally get a 10% or so increase per year but some sports are increasing 25% and baseball even doubling next year. I can't be the only one now having to trim back my spend due to the increases. If I just watched from TV I'd be fine.

I get it though if I can no longer afford some of my tickets, there will be someone who can.
I agree a hundred percent
Three years ago General admission tickets for under ten dollars parking was ten dollars.... 2 years ago, it went up to 12 to $15.A ticket and parking went to fifteen.... Now, depending on the opponent, your general admission ticket can go anywhere from 15 to 25 or $30 and parking is twenty dollars plus....


You are.
Not alone. I went into semi retirement this past year and now. Have to pick and choose what games I go to instead of going to all the home games.
 
#17
#17
My main complaint with the AD is the cost increases. The common person like me who only spends 8k a year on tickets is having to decide if I should drop some of my tickets. I totally get a 10% or so increase per year but some sports are increasing 25% and baseball even doubling next year. I can't be the only one now having to trim back my spend due to the increases. If I just watched from TV I'd be fine.

I get it though if I can no longer afford some of my tickets, there will be someone who can.
Welcome to capitalism.
 
#18
#18
You can have either cheap tickets or a winning team. Not both. Winning costs money. That’s just reality.
 
#21
#21
So as to give an alternate spot for discussion of Danny White and hopefully to divert this subject matter from the recruiting/transfer threads I am starting this thread.

Hopefully people will leave the recruiting/transfer threads to that subject matter and have their opinions and discussions re Mr. White here...

I will begin with my own wrongly placed last post: (edited)
He's smart 🤓
 
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#22
#22
You can have either cheap tickets or a winning team. Not both. Winning costs money. That’s just reality.
Not true. Take a look at what SC charges for women's games. There's a reason they were able to get people in seats even before they became super successful.

You can get season tickets for $55 a season for SC which equates to $4 a game roughly. The lowest you can pay here is 227.50 for season tickets and 20 bucks a game for parking if you didn't buy a pass. Accessibility to games matters too.

We are known to charge more for tickets for many sports. WBB and baseball specifically cost more than some other elite programs.

Once my baseball tickets were announced to double, I researched every sec teams ticket costs and we cost more than any other team.
 
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#25
#25
That makes me a proud sports consumer.
We are stuck with having to acknowledge that fair weather fans are fans, but their value add to the program is validly questioned. Prefer the through thick and thin fan at my side. Sadly the fan quality coefficient went up as attendance dropped not that long ago. True everywhere according to these boards
 

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