The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga has released the names of the final three candidates for the Mocs' athletic director position. The finalists are former Middle Tennessee State and North Carolina State athletic director Lee Fowler, UT senior associate athletic director for administration David Blackburn and Mike Buddie, currently the associate AD for administration/development at Wake Forest.
Fowler was the AD at Middle Tennessee State from 1994-2000, during which he moved MTSU's football program from then-Division I-AA to I-A. While at MTSU he also began a long run on the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Committee.
N.C. State hired Fowler in 2000 and he ran Wolfpack athletics until he was asked to resign in 2010. The former Vanderbilt basketball player in the early 1970s was the chair of the Division I Men's Basketball Committee in 2002 and is currently the director of basketball operations for the Sun Belt Conference.
Blackburn graduated from Tennessee in 1990 and began working for former Vols football coach Phillip Fulmer in 1993. He worked in a variety of non-coaching roles for Fulmer before moving in 2003 to a development position in the athletic department.
Among his numerous responsibilities in his current position are overseeing the football program's operations and budget.
Buddie is in his seventh year at Wake Forest, where he was a standout pitcher that was drafted by the Yankees in 1992. After several years in the minor leagues he spent five seasons in the majors, playing for the Yankees and Brewers.
At Wake Forest, he devotes much of his time to major gift fundraising, as well working on special projects. He also oversees several sports.
Laura Herron has served as the interim athletic director since Rick Hart left UTC in July after six years to take over the athletic department at SMU.
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