Foley manages an impressive roster of teams whose broad-based success consistently lands the school among the top national programs. Not only did Florida win its first national championship in men's basketball this season, but Florida is one of only two schools that has ranked in the top 10 of the NACDA Directors' Cup all-sports standings for each of the last 22 years. Stanford is the other.
Foley, who has spent his entire career at Florida and has served in his current role since 1992, oversees a program with a $63 million budget. During Foley's tenure as AD the university has spent more than $139 million in capital improvements and has retired debt. Since 1990, the Athletic Department has contributed over $32 million to the university's general fund.
Always generous with his time, Foley has earned widespread respect from his colleagues and peers who admire his dedication and commitment to all of the university's programs; not only the sports that receive the most public attention.
"All these sports are just as important as the revenue sports," Foley tells SportsBusiness Journal. "They don't make any money, and they never will. That's not a factor. When they win that championship, it's just as important. And when then play, it's just as important that you're out there watching as when your football team is playing."
Foley continues in the magazine's June 19 issue, "Anybody can watch our football team play FSU on national TV in the biggest game of the year. On a Saturday afternoon, go out and watch our softball team play. I think that makes coaches coach harder and athletes appreciate what they have more. I think that commitment is important to success."
Since 2001 SportsBusiness Journal has teamed with the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) to announce the NACDA/General Sports Turf Systems Regional Athletic Director of the Year Award winners.
Winners are selected among four regions - Northeast, Southeast, Central and West - and come from six categories - NCAA Division I-A, NCAA Divisions I-AA/I-AAA, NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III, NAIA and other four-year institutions, and junior and community colleges, plus one international winner.
Winners must have been nominated by a NACDA-member athletic director, institutional president or conference commissioner, and they must have been an athletic director for a minimum of five consecutive academic years. The magazine then selects its choice for SportsBusiness Journal's National Athletic Director of the Year.