Crimson Tide Executive Jeff Purinton Tabbed to Lead Arkansas State Athletics

Alabama Coach Nick Saban walks over to talk with the media about Alabama's Pro Day, Wednesday, Mar. 11, 2015, at the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility in Tuscaloosa, Ala. He is escorted by associate athletics director Jeff Purinton. Vasha Hunt/vhunt@al.com ORG XMIT: ALBIN401

Jeff Purinton, a fifteen year veteran of the University of Alabama Athletics Executive Staff, was named Athletic Director Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics at Arkansas State on Wednesday, ending what was a rather speedy search for Tom Bowen’s replacement.

“I could not be more excited about the hiring of Jeff Purinton as the next Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics at Arkansas State,” said Arkansas State System President Dr. Chuck Welch.  “From the very first conversation I had with Jeff, I knew that he was someone who would elevate our program to unforeseen heights.  Jeff’s experience, combined with his incredible relationship skills and his network across the nation, made him an exceptional candidate for our position.  Jeff has literally overseen every aspect of a premier athletics department, and every single person I talked with said it is his time to run his own department.  I am thrilled that department is ours, and I cannot wait to see what he accomplishes for our university.”

In his time with the Crimson Tide, Purinton served as Senior Associate AD, Executive Associate AD, and most recently, Executive Deputy Director of Athletics. Purinton received his bachelor’s degree in sports management and master’s in athletics administration at Florida State University. He and his wife Julie have two daughters, Jillian and Josie.

“Successful college athletics programs have alignment with their leadership, and I believe that is a strength at Arkansas State,” said Purinton in a statement release by Arkansas State.  “I am excited to be associated with an outstanding program that has enjoyed many achievements in the classroom, in competition and in the community, and I look forward to continuing to develop the Red Wolves’ strong national brand.”

Purinton, age 46, arrives to Jonesboro with an inbox of challenges waiting on his desk, including a fundraising initiative for Red Wolves baseball. However, he also arrives bearing a number of endorsements applauding his credentials, including this from Alabama head football coach Nick Saban.

“Since my first day as a member of the Alabama Athletics staff, I have had the privilege of having an office next door to Jeff Purinton. Over the last four years, being office neighbors has resulted in gaining a mentor, teammate and friend. Jeff has an amazing ability to keep morale high, galvanize staff toward a common goal and set an example of being meticulous in our daily tasks.  Additionally, his ability to build relationships across the department with all staff and coaches is top notch. He is known throughout the department as an individual who treats everyone with respect, is trustworthy and transparent, and most importantly, operates with integrity at all times. He is dedicated to success at the highest level and understands where the landscape of college athletics is heading.  Jeff, his amazing wife Julie and their two brilliant daughters are a fantastic choice for Arkansas State.”

PHOTO CREDIT: AP