Mocs Introduce New Athletics Director Mark Wharton
Chattanooga-(WDEF) UTC introduced Mark Wharton as their new athletics director on Wednesday.
He succeeds David Blackburn, who led Chattanooga’s athletics department for four years.
Wharton has 22 years of experience in college athletics, including the last four at Penn State.
Mark Wharton can’t believe his fortunes to land his first athletics director’s job at a school like Chattanooga.
Said Wharton:”I feel like this is a sleeping giant. Not only this university, but this town and the growth in what we can do.”
Women’s basketball coach Jim Foster calls it a home run hire given Wharton’s skills at Penn State.
Said Foster:”His area of expertise and his background in fundraising is invaluable in this day and age. That’s something we’ve got to do a better job of, and that’s something that he has a great resume and great track record at.”
If the Mocs can get the fundraising, then the skies the limit for the athletics program.
Said Wharton:”Interview process. I brought up examples about Appalachian State and Georgia Southern, and what they’ve done, and the towns that they’re in. Why can’t that happen in Chattanooga, Tennessee? A much bigger town.”
Wharton promises to deliver some early results.
Said Wharton:”I want to do something in the next 100 days that shows this crowd and the Chattanooga community that we are serious. What that is, I haven’t figured it out yet, but you will.”
At least Wharton doesn’t have to make any major coaching hires right off the bat.
Said Wharton:”I’m the luckiest guy in the world. I’ve got two coaches, brand new coaches, who are undefeated. (laughter) Chancellor Angle said that I get to stay as long as I want, as long as they stay undefeated.”