The Michigan State athletic director opening will soon be filled. According to Chris Solari of the Detroit Free Press, Alan Haller will be promoted from his current role of assistant vice president/deputy athletic director to the university’s new athletic director. The official announcement is expected to come later this week.
Haller, who received a lot of support from former Michigan State athletes, reportedly interviewed with Michigan State President Samuel Stanley over the weekend. He will take over for Bill Beekman, who stepped down from the athletic director role in early August, and will transition to a newly created role as vice president for strategic initiatives, working directly under Stanley.
Stanley and Michigan State hired an outside firm to conduct a national search for the university’s next athletic director, but ended up promoting from within. Solari — citing anonymous sources — reports that Auburn athletic director Allen Greene was the other finalist for the position and that he also interviewed this past weekend, while UCLA athletic director Martin Jarmond was a third candidate, but did not interview for the open role. Michigan State also contacted Heather Lyke, Pittsburgh’s athletic director, for the position, but she was not a finalist.
Haller has been with the Michigan State athletics department since 2010, where he started as as associate athletic director. He was promoted to deputy athletic director in 2019 after serving as the chief of staff and senior associate athletic director for the three years prior to his promotion.
According to Haller’s bio on msuspartans.com, in his current role as assistant vice president and deputy athletic director, he is responsible for “coordination of external relations, capital projects, athletics facilities, and event management. He assists with the department financial planning and management of the budget, leads the facilities planning team and oversees coordination and completion of a facility master plan, and supervises all athletics construction projects in addition to being a senior advisor to the athletic director.”
Before officially joining the athletics department, Haller was part of the selection team that hired Mark Dantonio as Michigan State’s head football coach in 2006. Following Dantonio’s retirement, Haller also played a key role in the hiring of Mel Tucker as Michigan State’s head football coach in 2020.
Haller also led the transition of the Varsity ‘S’ Club — which at the time was run entirely by volunteer Spartan letterwinners — into being a fully integrated part of the MSU athletics department when he was named the executive director in January 2013. This has “enhanced the club’s ability to gather and engage all Spartan letterwinners through more involved interaction.”
Additionally, Haller revealed plans in December for significant and expensive facility upgrades (link behind a paywall). Haller also serves as a liaison to several campus offices and groups, including the General Counsel’s Office, Office of Institutional Equity, Residential and Hospitality Services, Student Affairs, and student governing organizations. Haller led the reopening/return to campus planning for the athletics department in 2020 and is also on the committees for the following groups:
- Reopening Campus Taskforce
- Community Relations Committee
- Race, Diversity and Inclusion Group
- Clery Compliance Committee
Prior to joining the athletics department in 2010, Haller was a first lieutenant for the MSU Police Department and served on the force for 13 years.
Haller played football for Michigan State under head coach George Perles from 1988 through 1991. He played cornerback for the Spartans and earned honorable mention All-Big Ten honors as both a junior and senior. Haller, a Lansing native, was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the fifth round of the 1992 NFL Draft, and spent three seasons in the league, playing for Pittsburgh, the Cleveland Browns and the Carolina Panthers.