Loyola’s long search for a new athletic director ended Wednesday with the school announcing the hiring of Steve Watson for the position. Watson had spent seven years manning the same post at St. Bonaventure and overall has 16 years of administrative experience.
Loyola has not yet announced when Watson will start.
“Before I say anything about Loyola, I would like to thank all of the amazing people I have worked with at St. Bonaventure,” Watson said. “Our athletics staff and coaches are second to none. It has been a privilege to work side-by-side with some of the best in the business. St. Bonaventure President Sr. Margaret Carney, O.S.F. gave me the opportunity to come home almost eight years ago and for that I will be forever grateful.”
Watson hired St. Bonaventure head men’s basketball coach Mark Schmidt in 2007, and that turned out to be a great hire. Schmidt took the Bonnies to the NCAA Tournament in 2011 and won 20 games. The Bonnies have an additional postseason appearance in the CBI under Schmidt.
The women’s basketball program also excelled since Watson was named athletics director at St. Bonaventure
“When I first spoke with Tom Kelly (Sr. Vice President for Administrative Services) about Loyola, I knew very quickly that this could be the perfect fit,” Watson said. “It is a great school, in a great city, with great people. Much like the Atlantic 10, the Missouri Valley is an outstanding conference with a reputation for high-level basketball. I cannot thank Loyola President and CEO Michael J. Garanzini, S.J. and Tom enough for this opportunity and I am really looking forward to getting started.”