|Title:||Director of Athletics|
Paul Schlickmann enters his fourth year as the Director of
Athletics at Central Connecticut State University. Under his
leadership, Blue Devil Athletics has achieved unprecedented
academic and competitive success, has been integrally involved in
community engagement, has established record setting growth in
annual giving and corporate partnerships and completed one of the
finest outdoor college athletics complexes in the Northeast.
Schlickmann was introduced as the Director of Athletics for the Blue Devils in April of 2010 after spending seven years as the Executive Associate Director of Athletics at Stony Brook University, where he managed the daily operations of a 20 sport Division I program. Prior to his tenure at Stony Brook, he spent ten years in senior administrative roles at Yale University, rising to Associate Director of Athletics for Sports Administration and Football Operations. Prior to Yale, Schlickmann served a year in the prestigious Asa Bushnell Internship with the Eastern College Athletic Conference. He got his start in college athletics as an assistant basketball coach at Worcester State College, where he spent two years before accepting a graduate assistant coaching position at Springfield College.
At Central, Schlickmann has established A Commitment to Excellence in all aspects of Blue Devil Athletics with a primary objective of providing each and every student-athlete with a positive educational experience. Building Champions; in the classroom, in competition, in the community and ultimately in life, is at the core of Schlickmann’s expectations to build the premier athletics program in the Northeast Conference.
Blue Devil student-athletes are performing at a high level in the classroom. In 2011-12 the Blue Devils achieved a program first with two teams (women’s cross country and women’s outdoor track) recognized by the NCAA for finishing in the top 10% nationally with their APR scores, while a total of ten programs currently boast perfect APR scores of a 1,000. Thirteen of 18 teams finished the 2012-13 academic year with team grade point averages above 3.0, and 207 total student-athletes (60%) reached the same mark. Central placed 155 student-athletes on the most recent NEC Honor Roll (GPA above 3.2) and 35 on the NEC Commissioner’s Honor Roll (GPA above 3.75). Eight programs received national recognition from their respective coaches associations for their academic excellence during the 2012-13 academic year.
Competitively under Schlickmann, the Blue Devils have posted their two highest Northeast Conference Commissioner’s Cup finishes in the last decade. Central finished in fifth place in both 2013 and 2011. The Commissioner’s Cup serves as a symbol of broad-based athletic excellence within the conference. The conference awards points based on regular season and conference championship finish. In 2013, the Blue Devils also placed sixth in the women’s standings, amassing their largest point total and highest finish in Central history. During Schlickmann’s tenure with the Blue Devils, CCSU has garnered seven NEC Championships, including three straight by the men’s cross country team. This past season, the softball program won its first-ever NEC title and went on to win an NCAA Tournament game at the Baton Rouge, LA Regional, just the fourth NCAA win for the Blue Devils in any sport, and the second ever by a women’s team.
In a continuing effort to carry out a core aspect of the University mission and develop well rounded men and women, Central Athletics and Blue Devil student-athletes have had a dramatic impact in the community in the last three years. During that time, the student-athletes and staff have completed more than 14,000 hours of community service, including 7,900 in 2012-13 alone. That total is the second-highest total of any program in the NEC since 2010, and the most per-student-athlete of any program in the league during that time. In the winter of 2011, the department was awarded a $50,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation to fund an “Education through Athletics” program with a focus on the development of elementary and middle school children in the City of New Britain.
Externally, Schlickmann has articulated A Commitment to Excellence, the Athletics component of the University’s Campaign for Success. As a result, the athletics annual fund has been re-branded as the Blue Devil Pride Fund, and in 2012-13 that fund surpassed 1,000 total annual donors for the first time in school history, doubling the number in three short years. During that time, contributions to the Pride Fund have increased 65 percent and corporate sponsorship revenue has increased 110%. These increased donations have afforded continued growth and improvement in key aspects of the program including scholarships, facility renovations and enhancements, student-athlete support services and recruiting.
Since the Fall of 2010, Schlickmann has overseen the final two phases of an $11 million transformation of Central's outdoor athletics complex. Blue Devil student-athletes now train and compete in some of the finest facilities in the country among our peer conferences. The complex boasts an expanded 5,500 seat Arute Field with a state of the art video scoreboard/billboard, a Soccer/Track stadium with an eight lane track, field turf playing surface and grandstand seating for 500 spectators along with adjoinin, artificially surfaced baseball and softball stadiums.
In the Fall of 2011, Schlickmann engineered a major re-branding effort, launching a new logo, mascot and custom font while simultaneously negotiating a department-wide apparel deal with Nike to outfit all 18 sports. The re-branding is at the core of a comprehensive marketing effort to engage the campus community, the city of New Britain and the Central Connecticut region. Along with the re-branding came a new-look website, increased high definition video streams for fan viewing and a mobile app in conjunction with Presto Sports, the official website provider of the Blue Devils. CCSU also launched an online ticketing platform for the first time in 2012-13, facilitating access to tickets for CCSU football and basketball. All of these strategies have translated well as the Blue Devils have been in the top-two in attendance in football and men’s and women’s basketball each of the last three years.
Always active in conference leadership and NCAA circles, Schlickmann is currently serving a two year term as the Chair of the NEC Athletic Director Committee and has just begun a four year stint (2013-2017) on the NCAA Division I Football Championship and Football Issues Committee. He has been a member of the FCS Athletic Director Association Executive Committee since 2010 and a member of the NCAA FCS Regional Advisory Committee since 2011. Schlickmann is also integrally involved in campus life at Central, having served on the University Master Planning Committee and recently being elected to a two-year term on the University Faculty Senate. While at Stony Brook, Schlickmann was selected to a four term on the NCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Committee from 2004-2008, serving as Chair in 2007. He was also a member of Stony Brook's institutional Steering Committee during their NCAA Certification process.
Outside of Central, Schlickmann is an active leader in the Men Make a Difference, Men Against Domestic Violence Campaign, working closely with the Interval House in Hartford to promote their cause in the fight against domestic violence. He was also recently named a Corporator with the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Club of New Britain.
A native of Worcester, MA, Schlickmann is a 1989 graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, CT, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies and was a student-athlete on the Men’s Basketball team. Schlickmann went on to earn a Master of Science Degree in Physical Education/Sport Management from Springfield College in Springfield, MA in 1995.
Schlickmann and his wife Kristin reside in Rocky Hill with their daughter Mackenna.