It is with mixed emotions that I accept the resignation of athletic director Charlie Cobb who has accepted the position of director of athletics for Georgia State University beginning this fall, Appalachian State Chancellor Dr. Sheri N. Everts said. While I wish Charlie the best in his new endeavor, his leadership and collegiality will be missed at Appalachian.
A national search for a new director of athletics will begin immediately. An interim A.D. has not been appointed at this time.
Cobb, 46, took the reins at Appalachian State on July 1, 2005. Of the many achievements in his nine years at Appalachian State, the most notable came in March 2013 when Appalachian accepted an invitation to join the NCAA Division I FBS Sun Belt Conference. For many of the Universitys most ardent supporters, when Appalachian State officially joined the Sun Belt on July 1, 2014, it capped a years- and even decades-long quest for all 450-plus Mountaineer student-athletes to compete at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics.
However, the Sun Belt invitation is just the tip of the iceberg with regards to Cobbs many accomplishments at Appalachian State. The achievements enjoyed by Appalachian athletics during Cobbs tenure also included:
three NCAA Division I football national championships marking the first time that any program has ever won three-consecutive NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS formerly Division I-AA) titles and the first NCAA football championships ever won by a team from the state of North Carolina at any level.
shattering football attendance records at Kidd Brewer Stadium with crowds surpassing The Rocks permanent seating capacity for 51-of-52 regular-season home games.
a 298-percent increase in football season-ticket sales.
nine-consecutive Commissioners Cup championships recognizing the top overall mens sports program in the Southern Conference.
four Germann Cup championships recognizing the top overall womens sports program in the SoCon.
sweeping the Commissioners and Germann Cups in the same academic year four times a feat never achieved by any other SoCon school.
thirty-five percent of the athletics departments students making the Academic Honor Roll (minimum GPA of 3.25).
student-athletes achieving a combined 3.0 grade point average for each of the last four semesters.
seven of 20 varsity programs (football, mens basketball, mens cross country, womens cross country, field hockey, womens indoor and outdoor track and field) earning public recognition awards, based on ranking among the top 10 percent nationally in their respective sports in Academic Progress Rate (APR) scores.
the Yosef Club, which provides scholarship and facility support for student-athletes, setting fundraising records each of the past eight years. Annual Yosef Club donations, which never topped $700,000 prior to Cobbs arrival, climbed steadily during Cobbs tenure and surpassed $3 million each of the last two years.
Besides the move to the Sun Belt Conference and FBS, the most visible of Cobbs many achievements at Appalachian State was the addition of first-class facilities that give the Mountaineers the opportunity to be successful across the athletics spectrum for years to come.
Under Cobbs leadership, App State underwent a wave of facility enhancements totaling $50 million, headlined by the 120,000-square-foot Appalachian Athletics Center, which was completed in 2009. The seven-story complex, located behind Kidd Brewer Stadiums west stands, includes new football offices and locker room, a strength and conditioning center, training facilities, academic study space and computer lab for all student-athletes, as well as revenue-generating premium seating in the form of 600 club-level seats and 18 luxury suites.
The facility enhancements also included other significant renovations to Kidd Brewer Stadium, most notably the addition of nearly 7,000 seats, the bulk of which are located in an upper deck that was erected on the stadiums east side in 2008. Other renovations at The Rock included a widescreen videoboard that doubled the size of the old video display on the scoreboard in the south end zone, substantial upgrades to the public-address system and concourses around the stadium, a new ticket plaza, which serves as a grand entrance to the stadium at the corner of Stadium Drive and Jack Branch Drive, and ornamental fencing that replaced the chain-link barriers that used to surround the stadium.
In addition to the renovations at Kidd Brewer Stadium, the unprecedented surge of facility enhancements has also produced new homes for Mountaineer baseball, softball, soccer and field hockey, as well as Appalachian States first-ever indoor practice facility and renovations to Varsity Gym that have upgraded the facility to a premier practice and competition venue for Appalachian basketball, golf, indoor track and field, volleyball and wrestling.
With the $50 million in facilities enhancements, all 20 of Appalachians intercollegiate sports teams practice and compete in facilities that have either been built or renovated since the turn of the millennium.
Cobbs peers recognized him for his efforts when the National Collegiate Athletics Directors Association (NACDA) named him the NCAA Division I FCS Southeast Region Under Armour Athletics Director of the Year in 2011.
Cobb came to Appalachian State from his alma mater, NC State, where he served as senior associate athletics director for external operations for seven years.
The move to Georgia State represents a return to Atlanta for Cobb, who held positions with the Atlanta Sports Council, the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl and the Georgia Dome prior to his stint at NC State.
Cobbs wife, Lindsay, is also an Atlanta native and the Cobbs have numerous relatives in the area, including Lindsays parents. The Cobbs have two children Harrison, 16, and Branan, 13.