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MARTIN, Tenn.- Phil Dane has been named director of intercollegiate athletics at the University of Tennessee at Martin by UT Martin Chancellor Philip W. Conn.

Conn-s announcement was made this morning (Thursday, Jan. 20) during a press conference in the Ed and Carolyn Boling University Center on campus.

Dane, 45, of Martin, will replace Benny Hollis, who announced his retirement Oct. 19, 1999. Dane will continue to serve as vice chancellor for business and finance at UT Martin and will assume his new job responsibilities effective July 1. Hollis, who will remain active as the director of intercollegiate athletics through this semester, will continue to report to Dane as outlined in an Oct. 25 memo from Conn.

Hollis has served as the director of intercollegiate athletics at UT Martin for the past six years. A national search will be initiated to fill the position of vice chancellor for business and finance, which will be vacated by Dane.

-Phil Dane is an excellent manager,- Conn said. -No individual at UT Martin knows as much about the financial matters of the university as Dane and that knowledge will help him in seeing to the funding and budgeting matters of athletics.
-He has great enthusiasm for intercollegiate athletics and it is his belief that athletics is a key dimension of university life,- Conn said.

Dane has served as vice chancellor for business and finance since 1987. He has filled various positions at UT Martin since 1979 including internal auditor, director of financial affairs and assistant vice chancellor for business and finance.

In addition to his duties as vice chancellor, Dane has served as peer reviewer for NCAA Division I certification programs. He has assisted with the UT Martin athletics budget preparation in various capacities since 1979.

Dane is a three-year letter winner in Division I baseball at Tennessee Technological University.

-While the recommendations of the Study Commission on the Role and Funding of Intercollegiate Athletics represent a bold challenge, they can only be a formula for success if properly implemented,- Dane said.

-I fully understand the importance of each recommendation, and with the right support personnel, I honestly believe the recommendations can help us build an intercollegiate athletics program that will be widely respected.-

Dane said that, after more than two decades of administrative service to the university, he would enjoy the opportunity of serving as the director of intercollegiate athletics. -I have a strong interest in working with students, and particularly student-athletes.-

UT Martin men-s head basketball coach Bret Campbell said he is confident in the direction the university-s athletics program is heading. -Phil Dane understands the intricacies of the athletics program and the problems of the past. He is passionate about UT Martin athletics and the university. I admire him for taking the challenge of moving UT Martin athletics forward in the years to come.-

UT Martin women-s basketball co-head coaches, Kim and Gary Van Atta, also are excited about Dane-s appointment. -After heading the athletics study commission, Dane knows better than anyone the direction in which the intercollegiate athletics program should go,- said Gary Van Atta. -His knowledge of the university and his financial background should provide a tremendous boost for our athletics programs. We feel fortunate to have Phil become our director of intercollegiate athletics.-

-As the newest coach on the staff, it is very reassuring to have our program under the direction of someone who has the complete understanding of all phases of our athletics program,- said UT Martin head football coach Sam McCorkle. -I look forward to working with Phil Dane for many years to come. I do not think there is any doubt that Phil Dane has a great love for UT Martin.-

As the director of intercollegiate athletics, Dane will continue to serve as a member of the chancellor-s cabinet. -Athletics will be more directly represented with Dane-s presence on the cabinet, and it will be beneficial to discuss athletics weekly where major university issues are considered,- Conn said.

In addition to naming Dane the director of intercollegiate athletics, Conn said intercollegiate rodeo at UT Martin will become part of intercollegiate athletics effective July 1. Heretofore rodeo has been considered a part of the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources. -From now until July 1 will be a transition period,- Conn said.

Also as of July 1, athletic fund raising will be considered a part of intercollegiate athletics.