The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame (NFF) announced that Penn State Athletics Director Tim Curley has been named the 2011 recipient of the John L. Toner Award.
One of the top honors that a college athletics administrator can receive, the Toner Award is presented annually by the NFF to an athletics director who has demonstrated superior administrative abilities and shown outstanding dedication to college athletics and particularly college football.
Curley has presided over Penn State athletics since 1993, and his leadership has resulted in 21 NCAA and 64 Big Ten championships and numerous individual national and conference crowns for the Nittany Lions during his tenure. His passion for winning has also extended to the classroom with the NCAA reporting in 2010 that Penn State student-athletes compiled a school-record 90 percent Graduation Success Rate, 11 points higher than the national average for schools in the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision. Penn State has had 116 CoSIDA Academic All-Americans under Curley’s leadership.
Curley currently manages a $105 million annual budget and a varsity sport program that will expand from 29 to 31 men’s and women’s varsity teams in 2012-13. He pioneered the expansion of Beaver Stadium in 2001, pushing the capacity to 107,282, which ranks second nationally.
Curley is a two-time Northeast Athletic Director of the Year honoree by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, and he served as the NACDA president for 2005-06. This past year, he was among five finalists for the Sports Business Athletic Director of the Year.
Curley, a Penn State alumnus, began his career with the Nittany Lions’ athletic department by selling game programs and serving as the baseball team’s batboy. Before becoming athletics director, he served as his predecessor Jim Tarman’s top assistant.
Curley will be honored at the NFF 54th Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 6 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.
Past recipients of the John L. Toner Award include:
1997 − John L. Toner (Connecticut)
1998 − Doug Dickey (Tennessee)
1999 − Jake Crouthamel (Syracuse)
1999 − Davey Nelson (Delaware)*
2000 − Frank Broyles (Arkansas)
2001 − Milo R. “Mike” Lude (Washington)
2002 − Bill Byrne (Oregon, Nebraska, Texas A&M)
2003 − Andy Geiger (Brown, Penn, Stanford, Maryland, Ohio State)
2003 − John Clune (Air Force)*
2004 − Vince Dooley (Georgia)
2005 − Jack Lengyel (Fresno State, Missouri, and Navy)
2006 − DeLoss Dodds (Texas)
2007 − Jeremy Foley (Florida)
2008 − Gene Smith (Eastern Michigan, Iowa State, Arizona State, Ohio State)
2009 − Jim Weaver (Virginia Tech)
2010 − Robert Mulcahy (Rutgers)