This research explores the development of athletic strategic plans at institutions in the Big East Conference and West Coast Conference. Specifically, we examine how athletic directors at small Division 1 institutions structure, implement, and measure the success of their athletic strategic plans.
Key observations from our research
1. Athletic directors assemble planning committees to develop athletic strategic plans across nine to 12 months.
2. Athletic strategic plans realign expectations for NCAA teams and define quantifiable goals to grow athletic programs in key areas, including student athlete success, athletic program success, facilities, staffing and organizational structure, budgets and funding, engagement and visibility, and compliance.
3. Establish internal rankings of athletic teams to guide distribution of funding and resources.
4. Athletic departments implement the goals of an athletic strategic plan over five years, with quarterly to annual progress checks.
5. Assess the success of athletic strategic plans by evaluating academic and athletic performance metrics and through exit interviews and surveys of student athletes.