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NDSU chooses new athletic cirector: Bison name former Stony Brook associate AD Larsen new AD

FARGO -- Matt Larsen hit cleanup in the list of four candidates to interview for the vacant North Dakota State athletic director position. On Monday, he was the one who crossed home plate.

Matt Larsen
FNS Photo Former Stony Brook University senior associate athletic director Matt Larsen attends the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Dubin Family Athletic Performance Center. Larsen was announced Monday as the new athletic director for North Dakota State.

FARGO - Matt Larsen hit cleanup in the list of four candidates to interview for the vacant North Dakota State athletic director position. On Monday, he was the one who crossed home plate.
NDSU President Dean Bresciani named the Stony Brook University (N.Y.) senior associate athletic director to succeed Gene Taylor, saying the scope of his resume, experience and interview made him the logical choice. Taylor resigned this summer to accept the deputy athletic director position at Iowa.
Larsen has master’s degrees in athletic administration and business administration. He’s been a coach, ticket manager and has experience in the school business office, alumni and foundation work, human resources, equipment operations, summer camps and community involvement.
“When I look at that resume, it’s hard to see what he hasn’t done,” Bresciani said.
The 40-year-old Larsen was recommended by the search committee that pared the list of applicants to four for on-campus interviews. He was chosen ahead of NDSU senior associate athletic director Troy Goergen, Colorado State senior associate athletic director David Crum and St. Bonaventure (N.Y.) athletic director Stephen Watson.
Larsen, when reached by phone, declined to comment until a scheduled Wednesday news conference at NDSU out of respect for the process, he said. He said he and his family – his wife, Kristen, and three children – were excited and were in the process of booking flights to Fargo today.
Larsen is in his 19th year at Stony Brook with his main job duties of strategic planning, fundraising and facilities and budget management. He was impressive in his depth of knowledge of the Bison athletic department during his interview with Bresciani, the president said.
“Details and statistics, this was an exceptionally studied candidate,” he said. “He knows our athletic program, our coaching staff, our operations staff as if he had already been here.”
Larsen is a 1996 graduate of Stony Brook, a school that has seen its athletic department grow from a Division I transition in the late 1990s to a College baseball World Series appearance in 2012, FCS football playoff appearances in 2011 and 2012 and a men’s basketball program that advanced to the N.I.T.
“I think his resume is similar to Gene’s, he’s done everything and I think that’s big,” said NDSU men’s basketball coach Dave Richman. “More important, it was only for a bit for a day or two on campus, but I thought he fit. I thought he was a real person and I think that’s what we’re about at NDSU.”
The Stony Brook World Series appearance was particularly unexpected for a mid-major program from the America East Conference. As a senior associate, he oversaw baseball.
“For them to go to Omaha (Neb.) and the World Series, that’s an incredible run,” said NDSU baseball coach Tod Brown. “I think if you look at his resume, he’s very well-rounded in the athletic department and that brings a lot to us and what we do here.”
Bresciani said Larsen’s football background wasn’t a priority in the hire, saying it was more of a “bonus” considering NDSU’s success. Stony Brook won four conference football titles.
“I was looking for breadth,” Bresciani said. “I don’t want to say the decision hinged on any one particular background.”
Stony Brook is a Land Grant public university in the same manner of NDSU. Located on Long Island, its enrollment last year was 24,361. Bresciani said those factors added a level of comfort in naming Larsen.
“There’s a different atmosphere and culture at a Land Grant, an onus to the community and a sense of giving back to others,” he said.

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