Just call him the boss.
Chancellor Jack Hawkins Jr. announced Friday morning that Jeremy McClain, the former deputy athletic director at the University of Southern Mississippi, is the new Troy director of athletics.
McClain, who has worked at Southern Mississippi for the past three years, will fill the vacancy that John Hartwell left in July.
The process was not easy by any stretch, but Hawkins stated his confidence in the decision, despite the large list of names that were considered for the position.
“We selected Jeremy McClain from a deep pool of applicants that included senior administrators from every major athletic conference in the nation,” Hawkins said. “He has the right combination of experience, passion and leadership skills that we were seeking in our new AD.
“I am certain Jeremy will build on an already solid foundation and take Troy’s program to an unprecedented level of success.”
McClain received a standing ovation as he took the podium, and started his speech by expressing how humbled he was to receive the position.
“I didn’t have to be sold on anything; I knew who Troy was and what it was about,” McClain said to a packed Rane Auditorium in the Davis Fieldhouse.
McClain, who is married with three children, was the primary fundraiser at Southern Mississippi, raising funds for new sports facilities at USM. He was also responsible for scheduling games for the football program, securing future games against Mississippi State, Kentucky and BYU.
In addition to his success in scheduling, McClain acquired the funds necessary for renovations and construction of new facilities for the Golden Eagles. With his fundraising, the athletic program began projects that included track renovations, new football turf, updated baseball training rooms, a new golf practice facility, as well as the basketball arena renovation project.
Prior to his work at Southern Miss, McClain served as the athletic director at Delta State University, where the athletic programs enjoyed success during his tenure.
Under McClain, DSU captured seven Gulf South Conference championships, five NCAA regional titles, and 21 NCAA postseason appearances, including an appearance in the NCAA Division II football national championship game.
McClain said that he is optimistic for the future of Troy athletics, particularly the new north end zone project that will start “soon,” according to McClain.
“I want us to be the premier program in the Sun Belt across the board,” McClain said.
McClain’s energy and ambition were as evident as his optimism was.
“I think Troy’s best days lie in the future,” he said. “I think we are headed in the right direction.”