Rams Round-up

John Killian Features, Winter 2018

The University of Mobile Athletic Department has enjoyed some significant victories in 2018, many of which have been off the field of play. In August, the Rams completed a deal which makes American sportswear giant Under Armour the official outfitter of University of Mobile Athletics.

“Our objective is to give our teams the tools they need to achieve success, and this deal with Under Armour not only unifies our branding across all 18 teams but, most importantly, also provides our student-athletes with the highest quality gear available,” said Susan Shaw, director of athletics strategy and communication.

Along with apparel and equipment for university teams, the agreement provides for the Athletic Department to make official Rams Under Armour apparel available for students, fans and alumni in early 2019.

Rams Launch New Website

It’s not just student-athletes who are sporting a new look. In November, the Athletic Department launched a fully redesigned website which features live score updates, in-depth coverage of each team and a new photo album that allows fans and students to search available media for their favorite player just by clicking the player’s bio.

“Our student-athletes put in countless hours of hard work and represent our university with pride” said Coordinator of Athletics Communication AJ Crenshaw, “so we want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to highlight their hard work and celebrate their success.” The new website is at UMobileRams.com and will continue to have updates over the next month.

500th Win for Coach Campbell

The wins keep on adding up for our Rams as volleyball coach Jon Campbell marked his 500th career win in October.

Campbell has led the Rams for 14 seasons and, in that time, has been named SSAC Coach of the Year six times, winning five conference titles and coaching 10 NAIA All Americans. For 14 seasons, Campbell has coached alongside his wife, Amber.

Of her husband’s milestone achievement, Amber said, “Jon believes in his players, and he has the gift of seeing the best in them, even when they   can’t see it themselves.”

Campbell’s time at the university has seen him transform the program into a SSAC powerhouse, and his teams have become as well known for their tough play as they are for their on-campus leadership and infectious school spirit.

New Team Joins Athletics

Some new faces joined the Athletic Department,as part of the university’s mission to increase local awareness and engage local businesses to create new partnerships benefitting all parties.

Scott Tindle, Mobile area entrepreneur famous for launching Gulf Coast Ducks and the revitalization of downtown Mobile’s Fort Conde, joined the department as Director of Athletic Partnerships and Innovation. Tindle has a history of bringing new and innovative ideas to life and is excited about the challenge ahead.

“I am very proud to join the team at University of Mobile and for the opportunity to help create new strategic partnerships while implementing innovative business solutions,” said Tindle, noting the “tremendous momentum” at the university.

Joining Tindle is Susan Shaw ’18. The Nebraska native and UM alumna began her work in July as Director of Athletics Communication and Strategy. Shaw has an extensive background in sports, both on the playing side, having been a student-athlete, and on the administrative side, having served with the Mobile Sports Authority and on the planning committee for the National Association of Sports Commissions’ Women’s Summit. Prior to those roles and her relocation to Mobile, Shaw was a project coordinator and tasked with implementing employee, client and community events for Fortune 500 company Kiewit Construction.

Mobile native AJ Crenshaw is Coordinator of Athletic Communications. He is founder and creative director of Project Azalea, an online magazine and digital media company serving the Port City. Crenshaw has a depth of experience in media and brand management and was the driving force behind the new Athletic Department website, as well as a number of ongoing projects to refresh and transform local perception of Rams Athletics.

UM alumnus and Birmingham native John Killian ’10 is Coordinator of Athletic Operations. Killian is one of two university alumni who founded Birmingham Hammers (now Birmingham Legion FC) in 2013, the state’s first full professional soccer team. He still serves as director of merchandising for the team. He has also worked as a marketing and account manager for large sporting events such as the FIFA World Cup and European soccer championships (known as UEFA Euro).

Rams United

One of the first major projects the new leadership team is tackling is the implementation of Rams United, an effort to coalesce alumni, fans and local partners to improve support for UM student-athletes, upgrade facilities and build a sustainable future which will allow our Rams to continue carrying the torch for the university on the field of play and in the professional world after graduation. Rams United is membership based with many local companies already answering the call to provide benefits to supports UM Athletics, and more to be announced as the full program is unveiled in December. Learn more at UMobileRams.com/Rams-United.

UM Partners with Houston Astros

“Partnership” is a major buzzword as the Athletic Department joined with the Houston Astros of Major League Baseball to implement new practices for tracking and analyzing player data to ensure the health of athletes as well as the effectiveness of their training.

UM is the first such school to partner with the Astros on this project, and that is in no small part thanks to UM Baseball alumnus and Houston Astros bench coach Joe Espada. Espada also joined fellow baseball alumnus JC Romero (formerly of the Philadelphia Phillies) to host a Baseball Coaching Clinic at UM’s Jacobs Field in November. The goal of the clinic was to engage with baseball enthusiasts in the community and expose them to the beauty of UM’s 880-acre campus as well as the proud tradition of Rams Baseball.

Stay up to date with University of Mobile Ramsnews by following the Athletic Department on Twitter and Instagram (@MobileRams) or like us on Facebook.

About the Author
John Killian

John Killian