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University of Richmond announced today that John P. Hardt, athletic director at Bucknell University, had been named the next AD at UR.

ESPN 950 had reported on October 26th that Hardt was the front runner and his hiring could be imminent.

“John is an outstanding and seasoned university leader who brings a wealth of relevant experience and success in Division I athletics,” said Richmond President Ronald A. Crutcher. “He understands our deep commitment to the academic as well as athletic success of our more than 400 student athletes who participate across our 17 Division I sports. John shares our commitment to supporting our student-athletes, our coaches and athletics administrative staff and fielding teams who are able to compete yearly for championships.”

Since 2000 Hardt has served as the Director of Athletics and Recreation at Bucknell, where he has helped guide the school’s athletic program to success. During Hardt’s tenure, Bucknell Athletics orchestrated one of the nation’s most assertive athletics facilities overhauls, built and expanded relationships with alumni and major donors leading to all-time high membership and annual giving levels, created an athletics environmental sustainability program, and launched a comprehensive athletics leadership program.

He also built upon the school’s long-standing tradition of scholar-athlete excellence. Bucknell regularly ranks among the nation’s leaders in student-athlete graduation rates, as well as NCAA Academic Performance Rates.

He has served as chair of the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision Committee (2006-07) and in August was selected as chair of the NCAA Division I Men’s Lacrosse Committee. He has been a member of that committee for three years.

Hardt previously worked in athletics administrations at Michigan State University and Syracuse University. He is a 1984 graduate of the University of Iowa, where he played football. He also earned his law degree at Iowa.

“I recognize and appreciate that the institutional values and the successful athletics environment that exist at Richmond are ideal for the continued development of a nationally-leading, student-centered, championship-level athletics program,” said Hardt. “I am delighted to join the entire university community, its alumni, friends and neighbors; and I’m grateful to Dr. Crutcher for extending to me this extraordinary leadership opportunity.”

Hardt will officially begin his duties as Athletic Director for the Spiders on Jan. 1, 2018. He will be introduced to the community on Nov. 15.

“I want to thank David Walsh who has served as Interim AD and provided outstanding leadership to our athletics program during the spring and fall,” Crutcher added. “I also want to thank Executive Vice President Dave Hale, who led our search, and all the members of our university search committee. We appreciate the great interest in this opportunity expressed by so many outstanding athletic leaders nationally and we couldn’t be more pleased to welcome John as the new AD at the University of Richmond.”

For more, follow ESPN Richmond on twitter and listen to both the Sports Huddle and Hardly Workin’ starting this afternoon.

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