By Justin Rimpi
On Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019, Fairleigh Dickinson University officially introduced Bradford Hurlbut as its seventh full-time Director of Athletics.
Hurlbut heads the Knights Athletic Department after a five-year stint as the Deputy Director of Athletics at Sacred Heart University.
“This hire represents a new beginning on this campus and a new era,” University President Dr. Christopher Capuano said. “Athletics has to be a big part of creating a Metropolitan campus destination. Our D-1 athletics have to reach new heights not only in the NEC, but in the New York-Metropolitan area.”
Hurlbut was one of the four finalists for the Director of Athletics position.
“It was quite easy to pick Brad out of the field of 4,” said Capuano.
Hurlbut is taking over the department after interim Athletic Director Cathy Liggett served in the position since July, following the retirement of David Langford. Langford led the department for 15 years and was the Knights’ sixth full-time Director of Athletics.
“I would like to thank David Langford and I would like to wish he and his family well during his retirement,” said Hurlbut.
“I am humbled and honored to stand here today as your Director of Athletics. Together we will achieve great things for athletics at Fairleigh Dickinson University,” said Hurlbut. “I always had great admiration for FDU. FDU met all the qualities when looking at a position.”
Hurlbut explained that during his tenure, FDU teams will be NEC champions many times over and bring home the Commissioners Cup. He will also support student-athletes by making every decision with their best interest in mind. Hurlbut would like to invest in the Knights’ facilities and provide student-athletes with counselors for them to talk to whenever they need to.
“We are going to change the direction and we are going to bring home some trophies,” said Hurlbut.
At this moment, Hurlbut is not looking into adding any more sports to the ones in which FDU is currently offering at the Division 1 level. FDU currently offers 18 D-1 sports.
“We could expand, but it would not be by leaps and bounds,” said Hurlbut.
Sacred Heart, the university which previously employed Hurlbut, offers 32 sports at the D-1 level. This is something that Hurlbut does not see in the future of the athletic department while he is its director.
Hurlbut worked under former MLB player and manager Bobby Valentine, the current Director of Athletics at Sacred Heart, and Hurlbut will take some of the knowledge that Valentine instilled in him during their five years working with one another.
“What I learned the most from him is to talk to everybody, greet everybody, to always have time for everybody, no matter what walk of life they are from,” said Hurlbut.
“Together we will advance the program. I promise to be accessible, approachable and visible,” said Hurlbut.
Steve Hurlbut, the brother of new Director of Athletics Brad Hurlbut, held the same position at FDU spanning 1998-2002. This is the first-time that two brothers have both been a Director of Athletics at the same institution.
“It’s really neat. It’s special. It’s just really special to know what he did here and that he walked before me, but just also to see the love and admiration of so many people that were here when he was here, and are still here. It was definitely very emotional for me,” said Hurlbut.
“I guess you could say college athletics is a Hurlbut family business,” said Brad Hurlbut. “We can make something special on the banks of the Hackensack.”