View the first monthly update from Director of Athletics Vic Cegles, highlighting 49er accomplishments and advancements.
Primary donors Glen and Debbie Bickerstaff were also honored at the event.
2011-12 was a record year at Long Beach State
Men's cross country and men's volleyball score perfect 1,000
Generous $2 million donation by Debbie and Glen Bickerstaff made project possible
In seven seasons as the Director of Athletics at Long Beach State Vic Cegles has overhauled the 49er athletic department and provided a new path for the department to follow.
Cegles, who was hired as the school's 12th Director of Athletics in April 2006, has already made an impact in the athletic department's ability to fundraise which is key to his goal of making Long Beach State not only the premiere school in the Big West Conference, but a player on the national stage when it comes to both athletics and academics.
Since coming to Long Beach State, Cegles has placed strong emphasis on resource acquisition targeting the annual fund, capital improvements, scholarship endowments, ticket sales and corporate sponsorships. He established the 49er Athletic Club in 2006 and focused on centralizing annual giving. The reorganization has enabled teams to continue sport-specific solicitations and provide consistent recognition and benefits to donors.
The annual fund has increased in each year of Cegles' tenure and over the last two fiscal years has grown by 49%. Additionally, Cegles was instrumental in the recruitment of 44% more Director's Circle members, and 27% of all active donors have increased their giving in the last two years.
Cegles continues to focus on facility enhancements and a $25 million capital campaign for athletics. In the fall of 2012 the $2 million expansion and renovation of the Walter Pyramid locker rooms were completed providing state of the art homes for men's and women's basketball and volleyball. Long Beach State also opened a new strength and conditioning center within the Walter Pyramid overlooking the floor, while new LED scoring tables were added for all indoor events.
Among the outdoor facilities on campus, the addition of lights on George Allen Field initiated night competitions for soccer and opportunities for expanded community play, while the fan experience at both George Allen Field and the 49er Softball Complex will be improved with new LED scoreboards that were installed at both locations.
Under Cegles' leadership the university entered a long-term 55-year lease with the city of Long Beach to operate the iconic Blair Field, ensuring an improved home for Dirtbag baseball. With that commitment, a $17 million campaign for improvements at Blair Field is underway, which includes a new practice infield, safer walls and remodeled batting cages, locker room, offices and suites at the iconic stadium.
Cegles and 49er athletics have also contracted with Nelligan Sports Marketing, outsourcing all media and sponsorship rights with the national collegiate sales company. NSM spearheads a commitment to increasing corporate sponsorships and sales of season and individual game tickets for baseball and basketball.
Long Beach State has excelled both on the playing fields and in the classroom under Cegles' leadership. Academically, for the sixth consecutive year all NCAA sponsored teams at Long Beach State scored above the required 925 on the Academic Progress Rate (APR), the only California State University to do so for six straight years, and 317 student-athletes were recognized as "Academic All-Stars" by achieving a 3.0 grade point average for the fall or spring semesters. 34 student-athletes earned a 4.0 GPA and 65 earned a place on the President's List with a 3.75 GPA or better, with 80 placing on the Dean's List with a GPA between 3.5 and 3.74.
Diversity in the coaching and administrative staff is a fundamental goal and the athletics department was recognized under Cegles' leadership in 2008 as a national NCAA diversity winner.
Competitively, in his seven seasons at the helm of the Long Beach State athletic department, the 49ers have won 28 conference championships, with 28 LBSU teams advancing to the NCAA Tournament.
In 2012-13, the Sand Volleyball program, established under Cegles' tenure, captured Long Beach State's 7th National Championship with a victory over Pepperdine, as Long Beach State became the first program to hold a national championship in both indoor and outdoor volleyball. The Men's Basketball program once again captured the Big West regular season championship under Dan Monson, winning three-straight championships for the first time since the 1975-1977 seasons in basketball. Men's Track and Field and Women's Tennis also both won Big West titles, marking the second in three years for Men's Track and Field and the 10th consecutive year that the women's tennis program has won either the regular-season or Big West Tournament.
The continued achievement in athletics was highlighted in May as Long Beach State once again earned the Big West Commissioner's Cup, awarded annually to the most successful athletic department. Long Beach State has won three straight Commissioner's Cups under Cegles, and four out of the last five as well. In 2011-12 the 49ers set a Commisioner's Cup points record, which followed wins in the 2010-11 and 2008-09 seasons.
That success came on the heels of the 2007-08 season where Long Beach State had six teams win conference championships and six teams advance to the NCAA Tournament, a year after winning three league titles and making four NCAA Tournament appearances in 2006-07. The 49ers also claimed one league championship and an NCAA Tournament bid, both by the women' volleyball team, in 2009-10.
Cegles has reorganized and refocused the entire administrative staff, and also negotiated new contract extensions for men's basketball coach Dan Monson and women's volleyball coach Brian Gimmillaro. During his tenure, Cegles has also hired nine new head coaches in softball, water polo, men's and women's golf, men's and women's basketball, and baseball.
From 2003-06 Cegles was the associate athletics director at Temple University where he directed athletics fundraising, marketing and promotions, sponsorship and ticket sales while planning an athletics capital campaign with university development.
Previously he was vice president of business development for Gaylord Sports Management in Scottsdale, Ariz., after serving 16 years at Arizona State University in athletic development and external affairs. He ultimately served as the lead senior associate athletic director for external affairs in his final two years at ASU.
While at Arizona State he led the athletics department's $25 million capital campaign to enhance facilities and endowments and, among other responsibilities, supervised baseball, men's and women's golf and women's gymnastics. He also was the assistant athletic director for development at Rutgers University for five years.
Cegles served as assistant basketball coach at Carnegie Mellon University and as an assistant basketball and baseball coach at West Virginia Wesleyan College and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He holds a degree in business administration from Bucknell and a master's in counseling and student personnel services from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Cegles and his wife Bonnie have two sons. Vic, a former baseball standout at Rutgers, is the Director of External Relations at Minnesota and Casey, a former wide receiver at Towson University, is Director of the Annual Fund for Old Dominion University.