The University of South Carolina announced today the hiring of former Carolina Panthers team president Danny Morrison. Morrison, who earned his Ph.D from USC, will be joining College of Hospitality as a professor of practice.
“It was an easy decision to choose USC,” Morrison said in a statement. “The sport management program is respected as one of the best in the country. I was always impressed by the caliber of students from the program who came to work for the Panthers, and the faculty and quality of work they are doing is excellent. I’m excited to take it full circle and join them in the classroom.”
During Morrison’s tenure, the Panthers sold out every home game, renovated Bank of America Stadium, set training camp attendance records and reached the Super Bowl in 2016. After eight years with the Panthers, Morrison resigned in February to return to a college setting.
“Having Morrison join our college is a strong statement about how our program is competing at the highest level,” said Haemoon Oh, Dean of USC’s College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management. “With his stellar career and background in education, he will be an integral part of our college’s ongoing initiatives to infuse students’ education with industry knowledge and leadership mentoring.”
University of South Carolina is ranked first in the nation for sport sciences according to the 2016 Shanghai Rankings. The college’s sport and entertainment management undergraduate degree programs are ranked third in the United States and fifth globally in the most recent rankings from Sport Business International. The rankings also list USC’s Master of Science in Sport and Entertainment Management among the top 10 postgraduate courses in North America.
Before his time with the Panthers, Morrison served as director of athletics at Texas Christian University, commissioner of the Southern Conference and director of athletics and senior vice-president at Wofford College.
“We’re excited to have Dr. Morrison join our faculty,” said USC Sport and Entertainment Management Department Chair Matt Brown. “His position, along with last year’s hiring of Susan O’Malley, gives our students the opportunity to learn from former team presidents from three of the five major North American professional sports leagues. Our department’s blend of former industry professionals and leading academics enables our students to learn theory and practice like no other program in the nation.”
O’Malley previously served as president of the NHL’s Washington Capitals and the NBA’s Washington Wizards.
Morrison, who will begin as a faculty member in the Department of Sports and Entertainment Management Aug. 16, said he hopes his variety of experiences in a 42-year career in sports and education will be a benefit to his students.
“There’s nothing like being around students,” Morrison said. “Learning goes both ways, so it is a real opportunity for me to learn from the students and also from the wonderful faculty.”
He also said he plans to impart a lesson stressed often throughout the Panthers franchise.
“Hard work, harmony, teamwork, listen, respect – those are the values the Panthers organization lives by and they are fundamentals that can be applied to any organization,” he said.