New CIU Athletics Director Brings Championship Credentials

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Columbia International University has a new athletics director with NAIA championship experience. 

Darren Richie comes to the Rams from Webber International University in Babson Park, Florida. As A.D. at Webber, Richie oversaw 24 sports programs, and guided the school to two NAIA National Championships, three NAIA National Tournament Championship appearances, and three Sun Conference Championships. 

Webber also saw exponential growth under Richie’s leadership as he added five new sports programs and raised funds for critical facility upgrades. On top of his administrative duties, Richie took an active role in his athletes’ spiritual life as the director of the campus branch of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA). 

Before coming to Webber, Richie served for nine years as the athletics director at Colorado Christian University (CCU) in Lakewood, Colorado. Under Richie, CCU was successful in the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA), winning four NCCAA National Championships. CCU also consistently competed with state universities in the highly competitive NCAA Division II Rocky Mountain Conference.

Richie replaces James Whitaker who now serves as director of CIU’s Sport Management academic program. 

As he makes the move to Columbia, Richie says he is grateful to CIU President Dr. Mark Smith and CIU Executive Vice President Dr. Rick Christman for their leadership and guidance.  

“I am excited to serve and be a part of a team whose goal is to create the premier Christian university in the Southeast,” Richie said. “It is clear that CIU is committed to excellence in athletics as they educate, serve and glorify God in all areas.” 

Christman says he is delighted to have Richie join CIU and “lead athletics to the next level, in both academics and athletics completion.”

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