It’s not that often that you hear about an athletic director getting a contract extension after just a year on the job but such is the case at Pitt, where the school extended AD Heather Lyke through 2024 as part of a new six-year deal.
“Heather is leading an ambitious charge to transform Pitt Athletics, and her success here is just beginning,” said Pitt Chancellor Patrick Gallagher in a statement. “I am thrilled that she will continue to push our athletics programs to new heights—and spur positive change for our student-athletes and our university community—for years to come.”
“I am grateful to Chancellor Gallagher and our Board of Trustees for their belief in me, our team and what we are building in Pitt Athletics,” Lyke added. “Their support is invaluable and every member of our department knows our university is committed to helping us construct a championship culture with the right people. I want to thank our university leadership for their belief in our vision of what Pitt Athletics is capable of achieving—athletically, academically, within our campus community and in the City of Pittsburgh.”
Lyke joined the ACC program after spending several years leading Eastern Michigan athletics and the new deal may be a bit of a preemptive strike from the Panthers after her name was floated in connection to the open AD job at Michigan State. The move is good news for football coach Pat Narduzzi, who has a good relationship with Lyke and was just extended himself through 2024 last December.
The pair has been rather busy in their short time together on the football schedule front, adjusting dates in the renewed Backyard Brawl with West Virginia and leaving the future of the Penn State series in the hands of their State College rivals, among other things.