Monday, Dec. 19, 2022, is the first on-campus day of Wren Baker’s tenure as West Virginia University’s Vice President and director of athletics. Baker was hired by WVU on Nov. 30, and began his duties in Morgantown on Monday.
Baker, the 13th AD in WVU history, penned a letter to Mountaineer fans.
“First, I want to thank you for the incredibly warm welcome and the many kind words that my family and I have received over the past few weeks,” Baker wrote. “As I shared in my opening press conference, my wife and I were raised in small Oklahoma towns and have been taking country roads throughout our lives, and we are so happy that those roads have led us home to West Virginia.”
Baker was hired as West Virginia’s new director of athletics after a successful six-year run in the same position at the University of North Texas. His reputation as a successful fundraiser was one of the many qualities that made him a desirable candidate for the position.
As Baker gets started with his duties as a Mountaineer, he wrote that he plans to spend a lot of his time in the coming weeks listening to stakeholders, which he believes is an important step in developing the vision for the future of the athletics department.
Baker laid out three “non-negotiable principles” that he wants his tenure to be built on:
- Our student-athletes will always come first. They deserve the very best experience we can provide, and their success and well-being will be at the forefront of every decision we make. We will build them into champions, leaders, and most importantly, graduates of West Virginia University.
- Details matter. Little things make big things happen and attention to detail reflects our commitment to excellence.
- Integrity is a must. We will win with honor, and we will not compromise our values to achieve our goals.
WVU’s new AD once again noted that the current landscape and climate in college athletics provide the Mountaineers unique opportunities when it comes to Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL).
With those opportunities, and others, now ever-present, he called on WVU fans to make their presence known.
“Every member of Mountaineer Nation can do something to help elevate our programs and achieve our goals,” wrote Baker. “You can attend games. You can join the Mountaineer Athletic Club. You can support NIL opportunities for our student-athletes. You can be an ambassador by spreading the word about WVU, its global impact, and the many positive things happening in athletics and on campus.”
Baker closed his letter by voicing the excitement he has for getting to work now that he’s in Morgantown.
Baker was honored at midcourt during the WVU men’s basketball team’s win over Buffalo on Sunday.