July 06, 2016

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) Syracuse University has chosen a longtime ESPN producer and executive to be its new athletic director.

The school announced Wednesday that it hired John Wildhack. He is a Buffalo native and 1980 graduate of the university's S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

Wildhack joined the cable sports network soon after graduating. He has been executive vice president for programming and production since 2014.

The university says Wildhack was responsible for several firsts at ESPN, including producing a live regular-season college football game in 1984 and a live NFL game in 1987.

Wildhack is expected to take over from acting athletic director Daniel French in mid-August.

He succeeds Mark Coyle, who left for the same job at Minnesota after less than a year at Syracuse.

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