Kansas Athletics welcomed Jeff Long as its new Director of Athletics on Aug. 1, 2018. He brought more than two decades of experience in athletic administration at the Division I level, most recently at the University of Arkansas, where he led a program comprising 19 sports and 460 student-athletes from 2008 through 2017. During that time, he transformed Arkansas’ athletics department into one of the most successful in the country and established himself as a national leader within intercollegiate athletics.
During Long’s tenure, Arkansas captured 34 conference championships and advanced to 139 postseason competitions, including the school’s first Bowl Championship Series appearance in football and national titles at the 2013 NCAA Men’s Indoor and 2015 NCAA Women’s Indoor Track and Field Championships and the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. In 2016-17, Arkansas finished No. 20 in the Learfield Directors’ Cup, which measures universities’ success across all sports, marking the university’s eighth top-25 finish in the previous 10 years. Long also launched a $160 million renovation to Razorback Stadium. In the classroom, the Razorbacks posted a school record student-athlete GPA and exceeded the national APR multiyear rate in all 19 sports, including posting its highest program average ever.
While he was at Arkansas, Long served as the chairman of the inaugural College Football Playoff selection committee for 2014 and 2015, and remained a member of the committee through 2017.
He has also been active in NCAA governance, having previously served on the NCAA Management Council, the NCAA’s Sports Wagering Task Force and the NCAA Championships/Sports Management Cabinet. He was also a member of the Executive Committee of the Division I-A Athletic Directors’ Association.
Prior to leading Arkansas, Long served as athletics director at the University of Pittsburgh. Additionally, he has held administrative roles at the University of Oklahoma, University of Michigan, Virginia Tech University, Eastern Kentucky University and Rice University. He held coaching staff positions at Duke University, the University of Michigan and North Carolina State University. In total, he has been an athletic director and administrator in five of the six Bowl Championship Series conferences — the Big 12, Big Ten, Big East, Atlantic Coast and SEC.
An Ohio native, Long was a two-sport athlete at Ohio Wesleyan University, earning seven varsity letters in football and baseball before completing his degree in economics in 1982. He earned his master’s in education at Miami University of Ohio while serving as a graduate assistant football coach there. He then moved on to football staff positions at Rice, Duke and N.C. State prior to joining the athletics administration at Michigan.
Long’s wife Fanny graduated from Michigan. They have two daughters, Stephanie (a graduate student at Arkansas studying cognitive neuroscience) and Christina (a journalism student at Missouri).