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Kris Mort and Bryan Rooks, two experienced veterans of the university’s athletic department, will jointly fill the role as CMU athletic director.


Two long-time CMU athletic leaders to share duties as athletic director

Colorado Mesa University today announced that Kris Mort and Bryan Rooks, two experienced veterans of the university’s athletic department, will jointly fill the role as CMU athletic director.

“Bryan and Kris are two talented and extraordinarily knowledgeable people who have decades of experience between them. I have every confidence they can continue to lead the department and our athletic programs in a positive direction as our new co-directors,” said CMU President Tim Foster.

“We are also fortunate that we have a rising young star in our ranks, Austin Kaiser, who will play a significant role as part of the administrative leadership team. He is a bright, talented young man who will assist Kris and Bryan.”

Mort and Rooks have served as associate athletic directors since 2007. Both are CMU graduates who were student-athletes. Both have worked through the ranks of the department for years; Mort since 1994 starting as the head women’s softball coach and Rooks since 2001 starting as an assistant football coach. Both have been active with the RMAC and the NCAA, helping set the direction for Division II athletics for the state, region and nation. Mort has a bachelor’s in human performance and Rooks has a bachelor’s in biological science.

Kaiser has been the assistant director of athletics for student success and compliance at CMU since March 2016. He, too, is a CMU alumnus with a bachelor’s in kinesiology who went on to the University of Alabama to earn a master’s in human performance.

Foster said he realizes that this might be an unorthodox organizational structure in collegiate athletics departments but CMU often operates outside the box when it is of benefit to the students and the university. For example, CMU eliminated the positions of deans years ago and expanded the duties of department heads for a significant savings annually.

“We are Mavericks and we are always innovating and building new models,” Foster said. “We are very fortunate to have the talent and abilities these people bring to the table. That, in part, gives us the opportunity to try things a little differently that the rest of the pack.”

Rooks and Mort have worked successfully as a team for years and said they are excited, enthused and remain committed to giving student-athletes a highly competitive experience academically and athletically while the student-athletes earn a quality education and degree from CMU. Both thanked Foster and the CMU Board of Trustees for the opportunity and praised the department’s staff and coaches as dedicated and dynamic.

Foster announced last week that Tom Spicer, former athletic director, was leaving the university.  Mort and Rooks begin their duties as the athletic co-directors immediately.

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