Arizona hires Dave Heeke as new AD

Former Central Michigan athletic director Dave Heeke will be Arizona’s new vice president of athletics, pending Arizona Board of Regents approval, the school announced Saturday.

Heeke, who held the AD job at Central Michiagn since January 2006, will replace Greg Byrne, left for Alabama earlier this year.

“I am pleased and excited that Dave has accepted the position. I was impressed by his sustained level of accomplishment in promoting superior academic and athletic achievements by their student athletes and his ability to rally record levels of fundraising for facility improvements in all sports,” Arizona President Ann Weaver Hart said in a statement. “He has experience at the highest levels of competitive college sports and he is an acknowledged national leader among NCAA athletic directors. Dave is a perfect match for our Wildcat family.”

Heeke previously spent 18 years at Oregon, where he rose to become the senior associate athletics director/chief of staff.

“I couldn’t be more excited to be part of the Arizona Athletics family. It is truly an honor to be named the new Vice President for Athletics and have the opportunity to return to the prestigious Pac-12 Conference,” Heeke said in a statement. “I want to thank Dr. Hart and those involved with the search process for their confidence in my ability to lead one of the premiere athletics departments in the country. This program is about excellence and we will continue to focus on achieving at the very highest level athletically and academically, while creating the finest experience in the country for our student-athletes. I also want to thank all of the terrific people at Central Michigan University who have been so wonderful to our family during my time in Mount Pleasant.

“Arizona has developed a storied history and tradition and I’m looking forward to being a part of the next chapter in Tucson. I can’t wait to Bear Down.”