The University of Northern Colorado announced today that Jay Hinrichs has resigned as director of Athletics.
"We've built a strong foundation for UNC Athletics, and I am ready for a new challenge," Hinrichs said. "I would like to thank all of the student-athletes, administrative team and coaches that I have had the blessing and privilege to walk alongside in this journey. I am a better person, husband and father for being with them and am so very proud of their accomplishments.
"The coaching staff, support staff and student-athletes have incredible human achievements athletically and academically. There is no better group of coaches and student athletes in the nation than the Bears of Northern Colorado. I wish them much success."
Hinrichs has served at UNC since Aug. 23, 2004, overseeing the successful transition to NCAA Division I, NCAA recertification, membership into the Big Sky Conference and expansion of facilities and programs. During his tenure, teams have produced milestones that have included winning conference titles, earning NCAA tournament berths and achieving academic recognition from the NCAA.
"Jay has been an essential part of our journey from Division II to Division I and our successes in the Big Sky Conference," said UNC President Kay Norton. "He cares passionately about the individual success of each and every one of our student-athletes, and that has always distinguished his time here."
Norton will assume responsibilities for the Athletics Department on an interim basis. The university will not launch a search immediately, Norton said.
"We are going to take the time to look seriously at what we need in athletics leadership to build on the success of the past decade," she said. "I have complete confidence in the abilities and commitment of the department's staff, along with support from the university, to take us forward during the transition."