Penn State deputy AD Phil Esten is a finalist for the Charlotte 49ers’ director of athletics job
Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour talks with Phil Esten, deputy director of athletics & chief operating officer before the Maryland game at Maryland Stadium on Nov. 25, 2017. Joe Hermitt | firstname.lastname@example.org
Penn State could soon lose a key member of its athletic department.
The Lions’ deputy director of athletics, Phil Esten, is a finalist for the director of athletics job at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, the school’s chancellor announced on Thursday.
Esten is joined in the running to be the head of the 49ers’ athletic department by Florida Executive Associate Athletics Director Mike Hill. Both will have on-campus interviews with the school on Feb. 26 and 27, UNCC announced, and a decision figures to come shortly after.
A member of the PSU athletic department since 2014, Esten followed Sandy Barbour from California when she left there to become Penn State’s Director of Athletics. According to his school bio, Esten “oversees the leadership of Penn State Athletics’ development, marketing, strategic communications, and facilities and event management, and is the sport administrator for the football, baseball and men’s and women’s gymnastics programs.”
He’s also heavily involved in the Facilities Master Plan that was released in 2017.
Esten is a native of LaCrosse, Wis., and a graduate of Minnesota’s University of St. Thomas, Ohio State, and Minnesota. He has never led an athletic department in his career, although he did serve as president and CEO of the University of Minnesota Alumni Association before his tenure at Cal.