good morning everyone and welcome to our oh you AZ athletics media meet-and-greet I am Derek Eisner the sports information director here at oh you AZ I'd like to thank you all for coming out today and without further ado I'd like to introduce our president Kevin Eichner [Applause] morning everybody great to have you here this is an exciting time for Ottawa University Arizona we have been working hard as you'll probably learn today to get our new campus here launched for those of you who don't know we have been in the valley of the Sun for 40 years so we've been teaching adults that entire time and this campus represents our first opportunity to expand to a new residential campus it's as I like to joke with our board of trustees we open the new residential campus at Ottawa every 150 years as we are 152 years old we're very excited about our athletic program it is an absolute cornerstone of our strategy here to open and get the kind of critical mass of students who are really participants students as opposed to those who just want to sit on the sidelines and watch and that's really kind of the DNA of the student body of Ottawa University Arizona that's what we're after here so we're glad you're here we're excited about what's happening you're going to learn a lot more about the tremendous progress that has been made with our athletic program after just a few months of being in action and with no further ado I want to introduce our athletic director an individual that we were really really very fortunate to recruit he is a prized person within the field of college athletics he's won a couple of national athletic director of the Year awards there aren't many people in the country that can say that at any level and after working with him now for these several months to get this rolling we certainly understand it would you please welcome Kevin Steele our athletic director [Applause] it is my privilege to be here today and to welcome the media thank you for being here on relatively short notice Thank You president Eichner who is our 21st president of Ottawa University in 152 years but the very first president for the Ottawa University Arizona surprised campus there are many firsts when you are the first so this is a first there will be a few more first but this is all about people and I want to introduce you to the leadership team right away you have met President Kevin Eichner we also have our Provost here Dennis Tyner Dennis if you would wave thank you Amy Hogan our academic dean thank you Keith Johnson our chief operating officer thank you for being here David Barnes our executive vp thank you for being here and Brandon Fowler taking care of the student experience on this inaugural campus and surprise thank you all for being here without further ado I want to introduce you to the people who make this happen I was hired January first and told that we were wanted to start playing sports in August of 2017 not just a few sports we decided to start 21 of them one of which will not compete 20 of which will one would be a redshirt year and we'll discuss that further but the first thing I had to do was find great people and I was allowed to do that and God has blessed our efforts and I want to introduce you to the head coaching staff here a bow uaz in surprise I also want to introduce you to our administrative team first of all the person who makes most things run for us our assistant ad for internal operations Brittany Keller Brittany's comes with me from MidAmerica Nazarene University or she was in a similar capacity there and whoo I needed to have on her heels I probably should go ahead and introduce our women's soccer coach who happens to be her husband Skelly Keller welcome back to the Valley Skelly is a Mesa product and a Scottsdale Community College coach at one point when I stole him and took him back to Kansas for a little while and now brought him with me to Arizona our cheer dance coach her first coaching gig but she is no stranger to the field she is Alex actually an Arizona Cardinal cheerleader and was a Rams cheerleader but it's Melanie Nimr Guu Melanie thanks just wave when you get the chance folks our cross-country and track and field head coach again as a person I have moved around the country with me a few times his name is Wade Watkins we first worked together at California Baptist University then I took him to Kansas and he started programs at Cal Baptist and restarted a program in Kansas and now is doing it again he is a glutton for punishment but he's doing a great job here at OU u-az let me interject there are a couple of head coaches they weren't able to be here this morning they're on the recruiting trail and as you might expect that's where most of these people have been for most of their time first our men's volleyball coach is Kyle Steele he is the former women's volleyball coach at Oklahoma City University a decorated coach one who is one coach of the year when his conference was in the national tournament he's going to do a great job here for us at ouac and the other who is not here is our men's basketball coach who is only hired less than a month ago so he is definitely on the recruiting trail and that's Matt Keely matt is a decorated associate head coach from MidAmerica Nazarene University where he was under the auspices of a Hall of Famer rocky Lamar moving on to those that were here we are extremely proud that the Lord has brought us and fantastic baseball coach Tim Montez Tim comes to us from Jacksonville University Tim – Tim is a Southern California product where he played at Pepperdine and he has coached more places than I can even say that I've been between us we have covered the country too but it is a great privilege to have you here and and he and his staff are putting together a formidable baseball team here in this inaugural year they have done a great job on the recruiting trail our softball coach is Lee Dobbins leaves straight out of Chattanooga Tennessee and you don't have to talk to him very long before you recognize that fact he is happy to be having orange as a part of his life again here at OU UAV is one of our colors and we're excited to have him again another person that I brought with me from Kansas men's and women's golf Clayton Sikorsky Clayton one of the fine young coaches here comes to us from Oklahoma Wesleyan University he's already doing a great job making great inroads in the golf community they already know that ouac spirit athletics is here in spirit golf will be formidable quickly our women's basketball coach our most recent hand last coaching higher of the of the year we hope Miley car Miley car comes to us from Grand Canyon University where he was the interim head coach here most recently he is the local product also came to us from Buckeye Arizona his entire life he competed for Duran Canyon University as a player went on and did some things professionally in Europe but is now back from Grand Canyon and seeing the like at oh you AZ we're happy to have him here men's and women's tennis another Kansas product but not from the same place most recently from Wichita State University it's Brad louder back Brad is going to do a great job he is well respected in the tennis community in the tennis nation you don't have to look very long in his resume and see the people that he has worked with to understand that we are privileged to have Brad here as our head tennis and he is very excited to be had to have this surprised Tennis Center to work with as his facility also and we're thankful to the city of surprise for how they have worked with us in all aspects of this adventure our men's soccer coach Matt gal looking for Matt there he is Matt gout comes to us from the University of Pacific where his staff was recognized as the staff of the year in the West Coast region and the National Soccer Coaches out Association he was also it I'm going to remember this Virginia Tech he was a Hokie for a little while prior to that he was a pioneer at mnu but Matt is one of the fine young coaches in America you will be excited to see the brand of soccer he puts on the pitch it will be an excellent time now for the only squad that will not be playing in this inaugural year and will have a redshirt year it does not keep us from recruiting and I heard yesterday him tell me and I'm hesitant to say this number out loud because the president is here but he told me at this point at least in verbal commits he has about 96 verbal commitments now we know that those don't all transpire in transition but he's doing a great job on the recruiting trail his name is Mike Nesbitt Mike comes to us from West Texas A&M University he was also the offensive coordinator prior to that at the University of Houston and stephen f austin Mike and I came to know each other when we worked together years ago at Blinn College where there is a national championship to our fame there and did a great job there but it's great to have Mike back on staff he is a phenomenal football coach in a phenomenon land last but not least and I should say that our women's volleyball coach Kristen Steele this you will notice the last name she is my wife that's why she is not the least and certainly not the last in my life well she's my last wife I owe Kristen comes to us for many knew where she was the five times in a row conference champion five times to the national tournament she changed a program we know that she knows what it takes to put together a good product and I am privileged to have her along by my side and as my women's volleyball coach at this time it's a privilege for me to announce another first on April 5th we hosted a site visit from the NCAA the National Christian College Athletic Association after a day of interviews in a day of meetings the two individuals from that site visit went back wrote their reports and began a long series of four national voting projects we are privileged to have the result of those votes and the reason that we are here today it is my privilege and I've got a little help in the back that at this time that I can announce that we have been recognized and have been voted into being full members of the NCAA in our inaugural fall season of 2017 I think that deserves a hand [Applause] if you want to go ahead and unveil that banner right now coach Dobbins that would be great the NCC AAA has been around since 1968 it's an association with 96 members across the US and over 14,000 student athletes the NCAA views itself as the only mission fit intercollegiate Association for today's christ-centered colleges full membership what does that mean remember what it means we are accountable contests for all those that we can put on our schedule that's important in the land of college athletics it also means as full members we will be able to compete for national championships in our very first year I can't tell you how unusual that is but that is how impressed the committee was with our people and our place God has blessed us generously and we are excited to compete in the NCAA I appreciate you being here today for this momentous occasion

OUAZ Athletics Announcement (5-2-2017)

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