UA senior associate AD joining Jeff Long at Kansas

By: Matt Jones
Published: Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Chris Freet, a University of Arkansas senior associate athletics director, gives a speech on social media behavior for athletes on Thursday, July 27, 2017, during the Mercy Coaching Summit at the John. Q. Hammons Center in Rogers.
Photo by Ben Goff
Chris Freet, a University of Arkansas senior associate athletics director, gives a speech on social media behavior for athletes on Thursday, July 27, 2017, during the Mercy Coaching Summit at the John. Q. Hammons Center in Rogers.

— A member of Hunter Yurachek's senior staff is leaving for Kansas.

Chris Freet was hired as the Jayhawks' deputy athletics director for external engagement on Tuesday. At KU, Freet will reunite with former Arkansas athletics director Jeff Long, with whom he had worked at Oklahoma in the early 2000s.

Freet's final day at Arkansas will be Thursday. He begins his new job Friday.

"I am very pleased we were able to attract Chris Freet to our team," Long said in a statement announcing the hire. "Chris' strategic thinking, planning and communication skills will benefit us in all areas of our external outreach to alumni, fans, donors, students and the many other constituents we serve."

Freet has spent more than four years at Arkansas since he was hired away from a similar role at Miami. Under Long, he held the title of senior associate athletics director for external affairs and strategic communications.

His title was changed to senior associate athletics director for communications and revenue generation as part of Yurachek's restructuring of the department in July, although his day-to-day role was largely unchanged.

Freet once described his duty as overseeing all "forward-facing" aspects of the Razorbacks' department, including communications, marketing, ticket operations and promotions. He was the department's liaison with SEC Network, which launched shortly after his arrival in 2014.

Freet also served as the sport administrator for the volleyball program.

"I'd like to thank Chris for his contribution to our program during his four-plus years at the University of Arkansas," Yurachek said when reached by phone Tuesday. "He's made a definitive difference in our external, revenue-generation units, as well as our communications units. He and his wife, Courtney, and their two lovely children will indeed be missed and I wish them well as he starts a new chapter in his life."

Arkansas is expected to fill the role, which is one of five senior associate titles within the department. Yurachek promoted three former senior associates - Julie Cromer Peoples, Jon Fagg and Clayton Hamilton - to his director's cabinet and gave them titles of deputy athletics director in July.

"I wanted to restructure the department a little bit more to my liking," Yurachek said July 27. "I think it's a little bit more efficient in the way I want an athletic department run."

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