COLUMBIA, Mo. — Today, the University of Missouri and MU Athletics Director Jim Sterk mutually agreed he will step down from his position once a new leader is found.
“We are grateful for the dedicated leadership Jim has provided over the last five years to position Mizzou for even greater success,” University of Missouri President Mun Choi said. “We recognize his many contributions and appreciate his continued role as we search for the next leader of Mizzou Athletics.
“We now begin a national search for a visionary athletics director who will develop a strategic plan for Mizzou to achieve exceptional success in the SEC and to navigate a bold path in the rapidly evolving world of collegiate athletics.”
As the 20th athletics director for the University of Missouri, Sterk has led during a time of progress in new facilities, fundraising and increased academic and athletic success.
The new home of Mizzou Football, the $98M South End Zone Facility, opened in the summer of 2019, and ground is scheduled to be broken in the fall of 2021 on a new $34 million indoor football practice facility that will be located southwest of Memorial Stadium.
Mizzou broke the Tiger Scholarship Fund’s productivity record in raising $55.5 million during FY21 to surpass the previous mark of $50.4 million set in FY17 by more than $5 million.
Mizzou student-athletes have posted a 3.00 grade-point average (GPA) or better for a record nine consecutive semesters, including a school record 3.44 mark during the spring 2020 term, and breaking semester GPA marks six times. In 2018-19 and 2017-18, Mizzou posted school records in graduation success scores.
Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Mizzou saw a school record 18 teams represented in the 2020-21 postseason. During Sterk’s tenure, 18 of Mizzou’s 20 programs made at least one postseason appearance, a period which also produced seven individual NCAA championships and 11 conference team titles.
“I am grateful for the hard work of our amazing staff, coaches and student-athletes, as well as the generous support of our alumni and friends during my tenure as athletics director,” Sterk said. “I believe that Mizzou Athletics is well positioned for future success, and I wish our coaches and student-athletes well in their continued quest for academic and athletic excellence. MIZ.”