NORMAN — Joe Castiglione is no stranger to widespread, varying responsibilities that extend far beyond his duties running the University of Oklahoma’s prolific athletic department.
Friday, Castiglione added one of the most important, high-pressure gigs in college athletics to his future agenda. The OU athletic director was named as the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee chair for the 2015-16 season. He’ll serve as vice-chair during the upcoming year.
So right around the time construction is scheduled to begin on Oklahoma’s massive football stadium upgrade project, Castiglione will also be getting ready for his season in charge of the committee that selects and seeds the NCAA Tournament field each year.
“He really is a national leader in the field of intercollegiate athletics,” said OU president David Boren. “Our complete trust in him is shared by athletics directors all around the country.
“We’re not only proud of him, but we’re very happy for him because it really is an endorsement of his national leadership ability.”
Indeed, Castiglione has developed a reputation throughout his 16 years at Oklahoma as one of the best and brightest athletic directors in the nation. OU has won eight national and 60 conference championships under Castiglione’s leadership. He’s managed one of the few self-sustaining athletic departments in America and been recognized twice as a National Athletic Director of the Year.
Hofstra athletic director Jeff Hathaway and Castiglione were students together at the University of Maryland in the late 1970s, and both worked in the Terps’ athletic department as undergrads.
“It was easy to see even then that he was a special person, a wonderful human being, and had tremendous talents that obviously were gonna serve him well in his career,” Hathaway said.
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