April 7, 2008
ATHENS, Ohio - Jim Schaus was named Ohio's Director of Athletics, Ohio President Dr. Roderick J. McDavis announced Monday afternoon at a 3 p.m. press conference in the Convocation Center. Schaus comes to Athens after serving in the same capacity at Wichita State University for the past nine years.
Since assuming control of the department July 1, 1999, Schaus has reached the goal of making WSU one of the most competitive programs in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC), a fact highlighted by WSU's four-straight MVC all-sports trophies. The four-straight awards were highlighted by a WSU record seven conference titles in 2005-06, as well as 20 Valley team titles in the last four years.
In addition, all Wichita State sports that sell tickets were ranked nationally in attendance during the past two years, which is undoubtedly a direct result of Schaus' efforts to upgrade institutional athletics facilities.
For his leadership and vision, he was named the Division I Central Region AstroTurf AD of the Year at the 2007 NACDA convention.
The foundation for recent Shocker success, the $25 million Roundhouse Renaissance project, came to fruition in the autumn of 2003 with the completion of Charles Koch Arena, and surrounding Henry Levitt Athletic Complex.
In 2007, Wichita State won MVC team titles in women's cross country, women's indoor track and field, women's outdoor track and field, women's tennis and baseball. Nationally, men's basketball rose to a #8 national ranking, while the baseball team made its 25th NCAA Tournament appearance in Gene Stephenson's 30th season, playing host to an NCAA Super Regional for the first time since the format was restructured. Another highlight was the women's tennis team's first national ranking last season, while finishing the season 27-3, the most wins in school history. The tennis team also ranked #31 in the polls after starting the season unranked.
In 2006, WSU won a record seven Valley titles, which included the first men's basketball title since 1983. The Shockers also won titles in men's golf, women's tennis, volleyball, women's cross country, women's indoor track and field and women's outdoor track and field. The baseball team earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 24th time.
In order to create a solid foundation in his first year, Schaus restructured the department in an effort to create a business-like atmosphere, and in the process hired five head coaches and five new administrators. The department also completed the $7.8 million Eck Stadium-Home of Tyler Field project during his first year, further emphasizing Schaus' commitment to ensuring WSU student-athletes have the best facilities in which to practice and play.
Schaus came to WSU with an impressive background in athletics administration with stints in collegiate athletics at Oregon, Cincinnati, Texas-El Paso and Northern Illinois. Known for his excellent communication skills, attention to detail and team-building skills, Schaus has spent nearly 24 years in athletics administration, with a substantial emphasis in external relations and internal management.
In 1982, Schaus worked as an intern for the NFL's New England Patriots, and after graduation worked as a publicity assistant for the LPGA Tour before heading to Washington as a director of marketing for the Redskins.
Schaus has been a member of the initial NCAA Division I Committee on Academic Performance, an 11-member committee, which is made up of conference commissioners, athletics directors, NCAA staff and associate ADs, and is charged with administering the new system on academic reform.
In 1987, Schaus received his master's degree in athletics administration from West Virginia. In 1983, Schaus earned his bachelor's degree from Purdue.
Jim, 47, and his wife, Priscilla, have three children: Kevin, age 20; Diane, age 18; and Laura, age 16.