Worcester State University Director of Athletics Michael Mudd was recently interviewed by Peter Blute on WTAG on Wednesday, July 9.
Blute, who was filling in for Paul Wescott on the WTAG morning show, touched on a variety of topics including his new role as the athletic director after spending close to 20 years in the professional hockey ranks.
“It’s a privilege to be able to play intercollegiate sports,” said Mudd during his interview. “If you’re an intercollegiate athlete of any kind, you’re a heck of an athlete. Even at the Division III level sporting event, if you go watch a Division III event, it’s a great level of play. It’s a privilege to be able to play four more years a sport that you love.
"Our job is to make it a great experience, make sure they graduate and have a great professional life.”
Throughout the discussion Mudd expressed enthusiasm for a number of the changes that are occurring around Worcester State itself, especially with the things that President Barry Maloney has trying to do on campus.
“President Maloney came in a few years ago and has done some great things at Worcester State," said Mudd. "Everyone is really excited to be on campus, whether you’re a student there or a faculty member. If you came on campus today versus a few years ago, I think you’d be amazed at what you would see.
“All the indexes like enrollment, graduation rates and admissions are up. The affordability of certainly combined with a good athletic program, is certainly a great place for the student-athletes to consider attending.”
Another topic that Mudd spoke about was the opportunity of trying to create more of a fan base and for the department to become a presence in the local Worcester community.
“We’re excited that we’ve added a lot more beds on campus (with the addition of Sheehan Hall). Having more students on campus, (they) are the ones who are going to increase your attendance at football or any sporting event. I also think that if you increase your alumni support, it will bring the alumni back to the university.
“With Worcester State being in a great neighborhood, there are a lot of families around. Certainly on a Saturday afternoon, you could walk over to come over to Coughlin Field to watch a football game or a soccer game for virtually free or very little money. At some point we’ll outreach more into the communities, neighborhoods, to try to draw people to campus to see some great athletic competition.”
Mudd finished off the 20 minute interview about what he would look for when hiring a new coach.
“I think at the Division III level, there are a lot of spokes to the wheel, said Mudd. “The on-field coaching part is literally 10 percent of the job. You have recruiting, academics, alumni engagement and fundraising. They are the leader of the program, they are the person that who sets the foundation, sets the expectations for the student-athlete of what we expect them to do on and off the field or ice. But I am looking for a well-rounded, passionate person that will take all these spokes of the wheel seriously.
“We have 19 great coaches at Worcester State, 20 if you include cheerleading and we respect the job they do. Most of them are part-time positions; We only have three full-time positions. Maybe that’s something long-term we can improve as most of our other coaches have other jobs. There is a lot on their plate, but they do it for the love of the sport and they do a good job for us. “
To listen to the full interview, please click on the links below.
Telegram & Gazette Article (April 14) - "Mudd Ready To Get Started At Worcester State"