Lisa Love out as ASU athletic director, Steve Patterson takes the reins

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TEMPE, Ariz. -- Lisa Love is out and Steve Patterson is in as Arizona State University's athletic director.

According to university spokesman Mark Brand, Love, who has been the vice president of university athletics since 2005, "is leaving ASU to pursue other career opportunities."

At a news conference Wednesday morning, Patterson (right) was introduced as her replacement subject to the approval of the Arizona Board of Regents. Patterson is the COO of Sun Devil Athletics and managing director of the Sun Devil Sports Group. His experience in sports management includes work with in the NFL with the Houston Texans and in the NBA with the Houston Rockets and the Portland Trail Blazers.

“In his time at ASU Steve Patterson has shown a level of sports management expertise rarely seen at the college and university level,” said university president Michael M. Crow. “He is the ideal person to build on the foundation Lisa built and to take Sun Devil sports to the next level – to the highest level.

“I wish to thank Lisa for seven years of excellent service. During her tenure here ASU won seven national championships and the academic performance and graduation rates of our student-athletes improved dramatically.”

“I’m excited that Dr. Crow gave me the opportunity to oversee Sun Devil Athletics,” said Patterson, who joined ASU in July 2011. “We expect to have a program that consistently competes for Pac-12 championships, with athletes that graduate, connect and serve our community, and operate with integrity, discipline and respect. It’s time for our men’s basketball and football programs to compete for championships and perform at the same level as our successful spring sports.”

While Patterson will review operations, Crow said the objectives of graduating student athletes, winning championships and playing by the rules will not change.

ASU, an NCAA Division I certified program, features 12 women's sports and nine men's teams. About 500 student athletes compete for ASU.

"I am ultra excited about the future of Sun Devil football," head coach Todd Graham said. "Steve Patterson is a proven leader and his vision is in line with mine for this university and Sun Devil Athletics.

"Lisa Love is a great person and I enjoyed working with her," he continued. "I wish her nothing but the best and I know she wants the same thing for Sun Devil athletics."

In addition to running ASU's athletics program, Patterson will continue to manage the university's athletic facilities, the business office, marketing and fundraising operations.

Born and raised in Beaver Dam, Wis., Patterson attended the University of Texas, graduating with honors earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1980. He graduated from UT’s law school in 1984.