Cleveland State University announced the appointment of Scott Garrett as its seventh Director of Athletics April 8, 2019. Garrett was formally introduced at a press conference in Cleveland State’s Student Center by CSU President Harlan M. Sands.
Garrett came to CSU after nine years at Kansas State University, where he was the senior athletic administrator overseeing business operations, fundraising, coaching evaluations, fan experiences and student-athlete well-being. At CSU, Garrett provides leadership and oversight for CSU’s 18 NCAA Division I sports.
“Scott Garrett is a very successful leader who has had a tremendous impact at every level of athletics administration he has touched. He is all about building a winning culture with integrity and values – both on the field and in the classroom,” CSU President Harlan M. Sands said at the time of Garrett's hiring. “We are very excited that he will be joining our team, and I look forward to working with him as we build upon the athletic and academic achievements of our student-athletes.”
“I am privileged and honored to be named Cleveland State University’s next Director of Athletics,” Garrett said upon taking the position. “Throughout the search process I have been extremely impressed with President Sands’ vision for CSU, the positive energy around campus and the numerous opportunities to move CSU Athletics forward.”
Garrett most recently served as Executive Associate Athletics Director for External Operations and Chief Revenue Officer at Kansas State, where he was responsible for all aspects of administration, including strategic revenue generation initiatives and fan experience programming. In his nine years at Kansas State, Garrett provided leadership that generated 46 sellouts in football, national Top 25 attendance rankings in men’s and women’s basketball, women’s soccer, volleyball and baseball and a 40 percent increase in overall ticket revenue. Garrett’s duties at Kansas State also included management of a donor portfolio accounting for over $1.5 million in contributions annually, spearheading the department’s strategic planning efforts and sport administration oversight, including coaching personnel evaluations and search management.
Garrett’s previous stops in intercollegiate athletics include serving as Assistant Athletics Director at Wichita State University from 2008 to 2010 and Director of Sales and Ticket Operations with fellow Horizon League member University of Illinois at Chicago from 2003 to 2008.
Garrett graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in business administration and marketing from Illinois State in 2002 and proceeded to earn a Master’s in sport management and athletics administration from Indiana in 2003.
A native of Channahon, Ill., Garrett and his wife Kristy have two children, Matthew (12) and Audrey (8).
What Others Are Saying About Scott Garrett
John Currie, Director of Athletics at Wake Forest University and former Director of Athletics at Kansas State University:
"President Sands has hit a grand slam home run with the hire of Scott Garrett. Scott is deeply committed to the holistic development of student-athletes, is a tireless worker and is one of the most creative promoters in all of college athletics. From the moment we hired him at Kansas State in 2010, his intellect, drive and knack for innovation made our department and university community better. I am excited to watch him team with President Sands to turn Cleveland State into a leader in the Horizon League academically, athletically and in service to the community."
Bob Vecchione, Executive Director of the National Association of College Directors of Athletics:
"Scott Garrett is an outstanding professional who will do a terrific job at CSU. He has the right combination of solid core values, creativity, teamwork and servant leadership to elevate Viking Athletics. I look forward to working with Scott and engaging CSU on our collaborative initiatives in college athletics."
Palma Juhasz, Former Student-Athlete, Kansas State University (BBA, '17):
"I am very happy for Scott Garrett getting this new role. He absolutely deserves it, and I am sure he will make a positive impact right away. He always looks for opportunities to enhance every student-athlete's experience and ultimately supports them to achieve their dreams. Without his tremendous effort the improvements to the facilities for the K-State tennis program would not have been possible. He will be greatly missed by many at K-State but I've no doubt he will be an exceptional athletic director for Cleveland State University."
Gene Taylor, Director of Athletics, Kansas State University:
"Scott has been a tremendous asset to our department and an integral part of our senior team. We are very happy for Scott and his family. He has worked extremely hard to prepare himself for this great opportunity. His expertise in revenue generation, fan experience and ticketing has elevated K-State to achieving some of the nation's top attendance marks in recent years, while also improving and enhancing the overall experience for our fans at games. His tireless work ethic, passion and external background will be a winning combination for Cleveland State."