Sports

Sports Talk with Kirby Hocutt

In this month’s Sports Talk, Campus Live had the chance to sit down with Texas Tech’s Athletics Director, Kirby Hocutt. We asked the outgoing Chairman of the College Football Playoff Committee his thoughts on Texas Tech’s success on and off the field, how he managed two high profile jobs at the same time, discussed future projects in store for TTU Athletics, and found out what he does with his family outside of his busy lifestyle.

In discussing his thoughts on the nationally ranked teams Texas Tech is producing on the field and court, Hocutt said, “It’s going to be an exciting spring ahead but, more than that, I think it speaks to the culture that is being developed right here at Texas Tech within our athletics department.”

When we sat down to interview Hocutt, Texas Tech Athletics had a total of six teams nationally ranked, the highest in program history.

“It’s a great time to be a Red Raider, we talk about being elite and being the very best in our industry, and we have a great team here focused on and work- ing towards that each and every day,” Hocutt said.

In addition to serving as the Athletics Director for Texas Tech, Hocutt had the honor to serve as Chairman of the College Football Playoff Selection Committee. We wanted to know how he managed both.

“I’ve got a great team around me,” Hocutt said. “That’s the simple answer, and it’s the only answer.  I’ve got a great group of people that I work with each and every day that, during my three years of serving on the College Football Playoff Selection Committee, it was critical for me and for us as an organization that I had a team here that continued to lead day-to-day and kept our business moving forward.”

“Any successful leader will tell you that you’re only going to be as good as those you have around you and I’ve got a great team around me,” Hocutt said.

Our next topic of discussion shi ed focus to the Campaign for Fearless Champions and we wanted to know any updates along with the plans in store for future renovations of athletics facilities.

“We are very fortunate and have had incredible success with the Campaign for Fearless Champions,” Hocutt said.

“It’s allowed us to fund fifteen facilities projects, and we have ve more that we intend to achieve through this campaign initiative.”

Future athletics facilities projects were a topic we asked about, and Hocutt said, “We’re currently working with some architects out of the Dallas area on South End Zone football training facility concepts and ideas, and they are the same firm we worked with on the new 48 million dollar, state-of-the-art, world-class football and indoor track and field facility.”

“We continue to move forward in the design phase for a new stand-alone basketball practice facility to meet the needs of our basketball programs, and we’re about ninety percent of the way finished,” Hocutt said.

“We’re in conversations now on a master plan for our baseball program at Rip Griffin Park – Dan Law Field, we’ve had tremendous leadership and success under Tim Tadlock, so we’re looking at a new master plan that we’re excited about.”

Texas Tech student-athletes will also have a new place for dining. In speaking with Hocutt, we learned of a new stand-alone dining facility/training table in the works.

“We’re also in the planning stages of a new stand-alone training table, dining facility, for our student-athletes that I believe will become a reality within the next twenty-four months,” Hocutt said.

Our final topic of discussion took a glance at Hocutt outside of his busy schedule. We wanted to know what he and his family do outside of TTU Athletics.

“Intercollegiate athletics is a lifestyle, it’s not a profession, and I enjoy it every day and wouldn’t want to do anything else outside of my role as an athletics director,” Hocutt said.

“With that being said, even more important is my family, and Diane and I have two boys, Drew who is a sophomore in high school, and Brooks is our youngest, he’s in eighth grade.”

Hocutt told us how his family time included sporting events because his two sons play sports as well.

“They play all the sports and keep us busy, so if I’m not at a Texas Tech athletics event, I’m going to be at a Frenship High School or Frenship Middle School event, and there’s no other place I’d rather be than watching them compete, have fun and interact with their friends,” Hocutt said.

“It’s fun to watch them grow, although it’s going way too fast.”

Lastly, we wanted to know where Hocutt’s local hotspots would be, and we found out the following.

“Our favorite hotspot would have to be our back porch when we have a day or on a weekend, that’s usually where we can be found as we like to gather around the fire pit at night and just spend time together.”

That concludes our behind the scenes glance with the Under Armour National Athletics Director of the year. From serving TTU on a national scale, to lead- ing the athletics program to new heights, Kirby Hocutt is a man with a great vision and plan for Texas Tech University.

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