By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer
A former Adams State College athletic director and sporting goods salesman has become the new Eastern New Mexico University athletic director.
ENMU President Steven Gamble announced Monday that Jeff Geiser of Alamosa, Colo., had been selected to replace Mike Maguire, who is to teach physical education and raise funds for the athletic department.
Geiser said he had a tentative official start date of June 15, but he was already unofficially working to get organized.
“I believe that the Eastern situation has got great potential,” he said. “There’s a lot of good things happening, but there’s some things in the athletic department that can be improved.”
Gamble said all four finalists for the job were good candidates.
“Dr. Geiser has a lengthy resume of experience and success as both a coach and athletic director, and he rose to the top of the pool,” Gamble said. “Dr. Geiser is also very familiar with the Southwest, and that was a plus for him.”
Geiser’s first priority upon moving to Portales is to buy ENMU apparel, followed by getting to know the athletics staff and then setting goals, he said. During those tasks, he plans to start fundraising.
By developing a strategic plan, Geiser intends to determine long- and short-term goals for the athletic program.
“If I can get that done this summer, I think that’ll be a huge, huge step in the right direction,” he said.
Geiser said the ENMU athletic program’s strengths include student athletes who are good students and campus citizens.
Also, Geiser said the coaches, administration and support staff had a passion for athletics. The program can rise above any facilities that may not be good, he said.
“It’s the people that make an institution, and I’m impressed with the people,” Geiser said.
Geiser said he hopes to produce winning teams and he believes that’s a realistic goal.
He said ENMU teams need to win home games because it’s hard to win on the road in the Lone Star Conference.
To make improvements, Geiser said he needs support from the university and surrounding communities.
Geiser has a doctorate degree in sports administration from the University of New Mexico. He played football for the University of Colorado-Boulder.
At Adams State, Geiser served as head football coach, instructor, associate athletic director and athletic director at various times from 1984 to 2006.
After leaving Adams State, Geiser worked as a sales representative for Gilman Gear Sporting Goods. He said he is returning to the college world because sales wasn’t challenging and he missed the vitality and enthusiasm of a campus.
Geiser grew up in La Veda, Colo., where he met his wife, Nancy, in first grade. The couple has two children, 23-year-old Brody and 18-year-old Caitlin.