May 17, 2013
SAN BRUNO, Calif. --- The West Coast Conference Presidents' Council has announced the contract of Commissioner Jamie Zaninovich has been extended through May 31, 2017.
"The West Coast Conference Presidents' Council and Executive Council are pleased with the progress that continues in the WCC under the leadership of commissioner Jamie Zaninovich," said WCC Presidents' Council Chair and Saint Mary's College of California President Brother Ronald Gallagher. "We have seen success with conference realignment, the addition of competitors such as BYU and growth in media opportunities and exposure. We look forward to a even more robust and competitive schedule going forward with the addition of the University of the Pacific as the WCC's 10th member this summer."
Zaninovich is in his sixth year on the job after being named the second full-time Commissioner in West Coast Conference history on March 9, 2008.
Over the last three years, Zaninovich has led the conference through a period of unprecedented growth, with the addition of Brigham Young University and the return of the University of the Pacific to the West Coast Conference membership - the conference's first membership additions since 1979.
Zaninovich, who was appointed to the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Committee in 2011-12 and is a Past Chair of the Division I Collegiate Commissioners Association Division I Subdivision, also helped create a partnership with the Pacific-12 and Big West conferences on men's and women's basketball officiating training and evaluation programs with the addition of Dave Libbey and Violet Palmer as the conference's coordinators of basketball officials. Zaninovich is also a founding member of the Board of Managers and Competition Committee of the Men's College Basketball Officiating (MCBO), L.L.C. and a past member of the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics.
During his tenure, Zaninovich has overseen a successful transition for the conference basketball championships to the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. The event has set tournament records for revenue, total attendance and single game attendance, and will remain at the Orleans through 2016 after Zaninovich negotiated a three-year extension with the facility that was announced earlier this year.
Named one of the prestigious "40 Under 40" honorees by the Sports Business Journal in 2010, Zaninovich has also brought forward television advances that have showcased the conference's brand regionally and nationally. Zaninovich has forged long-term agreements with ESPN, Time Warner Cable SportsNet, Comcast SportsNet, and ROOT Sports to bring WCC basketball into more television homes than ever before. This past season, the new West Coast Conference Game of the Week showcased WCC men's basketball across the conference's entire geographic footprint. The game was part of expanded coverage that featured a weekly half-hour television show dedicated to WCC sports.
Zaniniovich's tenure at the West Coast Conference has been highlighted by a five-year strategic plan (2010-14) focused on three high-level strategic goals for the WCC - competitiveness, exposure and leadership - which includes implementation of men's basketball non-conference scheduling and performance strategies, a conference-wide video streaming enhancement program, approval of a Sportsmanship Initiative, the launch of a new conference mark, and continued commitment to activation of the WCC voice within the NCAA governance structure.
"I am sincerely grateful to the Presidents' Council for both this tremendous opportunity and their unwavering support of our conference leadership," Zaninovich said. "Our schools share a unique, common belief in holistic education - which is as equally impressive as their athletics accomplishments on a national level - and I am proud to be associated with such uncompromising excellence. I am very focused on what lies ahead for the West Coast Conference and look forward to working with our phenomenal campus leadership in the future to further realize our strategic vision."
Zaninovich, who was selected to lead the conference by the league's school presidents, previously served as the Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Relations at Princeton University. Prior to Princeton, Zaninovich spent two years as Senior Assistant Athletic Director for Strategic Planning and Men's Basketball Operations at Stanford after earning his MBA from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business in 2001.
About the West Coast Conference
The West Coast Conference was formed in 1952 and has evolved and grown to become a nationally recognized and competitive force in Division I intercollegiate athletics, with 13 conference-sponsored sports: baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross country, men's and women's golf, women's rowing, men's and women's soccer, men's and women's tennis and women's volleyball. The WCC is characterized by the stability of its membership and its unique emphasis on combining excellence in athletics with excellence in academics. For more information, visit www.wwcsports.com or follow the West Coast Conference on Twitter @WCCsports.