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UConn Hires New Athletic Director

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The UConn athletic department has gone to the SEC ranks to hire its new Athletic Director.

Mark Blaudschun first reported that UConn's search for a new athletic director has come to an end with the hiring of David Benedict, former Chief Operating Officer—a newly-created position—for the Auburn athletic department. Multiple Connecticut beat writers have confirmed the news as well.

According to Auburn's athletic website, Benedict's role was to oversee "all day-to-day operations of the department." In his time there, he directed a feasibility study for enhancements to the football stadium, led efforts for a five-year departmental strategic plan as well as the "Master Facility Plan," and played a key role in the budgeting process. He was hired in February 2014.

Before Auburn, Benedict spent two years at the University of Minnesota as deputy athletic director. In that role, he led the sport supervision and student-athlete welfare divisions. He also created the framework for the most successful fundraising campaign in school history. He was part of the committees for men's basketball head coaching searches at both Auburn, where they hired Bruce Pearl, and Minnesota, who hired Richard Pitino.

Benedict served as executive associate/interim athletic director at Virginia Commonwealth University from 2010-2012, helping the department transition to the Atlantic 10 conference and also leading fundraising efforts for new facilities and the retention of basketball coach Shaka Smart.

There will be a press conference tomorrow at 11 a.m. to announce the hire, which has been released online by UConn as well. We'll update this post with more information as it comes in.