Ask the Athletic Director

basketball with hands reaching up
Jack Allday, Director of Athletics

He may not have done it all, but he’s come close.

In March, 2015, Allday was appointed as the UNTD athletic director, charged with directing the launch of intercollegiate athletics at the institution. Previously, the SMU graduate served as AD at Northwood University where he oversaw 300 student athletes and a staff of two dozen coaches, trainers and graduate assistants. Under his direction, Northwood moved into the NAIA’s Sooner Athletic Conference, the league in which UNTD will now compete. Following a distinguished military career during which he graduated at the top of his Army Officer Candidate School class and served in Vietnam, Allday returned to Dallas and began a career in advertising. He established his own prize-winning agency at age 29.

While a student at Highland Park High School he was a member of the 1957 Texas AAAA state championship football team and was captain of the baseball team. A talented drummer, Allday has toured much of the U.S. as a member of jazz, blues and show bands. The Nightcaps, a legendary rock and roll band he played with in his collegiate years, was recently inducted into the Texas Music Hall of Fame. He is also the author of WARRIOR GENERAL: The Legend and Legacy of Archie J. Old, Jr.

Here are some commonly asked questions regarding Trailblazers athletics, with answers courtesy of UNT Dallas Director of Athletics Jack Allday:

Q:  When will play begin?

Jack: Teams will begin representing UNT Dallas in intercollegiate competition in fall 2020, with the advent of the 2020-2021 academic year.

Q:  What sports will UNT Dallas play?

Jack:  In Year One we will play men’s and women’s basketball as well run both men’s and women’s cross country and track.  Other sports will be added in the coming years.

Q:  Will UNT Dallas play be governed by the NCAA or NAIA?

Jack:  Our application for membership in the NAIA has been accepted.  As a new member, we will hold associate membership in Year One.  We should be granted full membership after this initial year.  More than 250 colleges and universities are members of the NAIA, which is a great organization with a long history.

Q:  Will UNT Dallas belong to a conference?

Jack:  Yes.  We anticipate acceptance into the Sooner Athletic Conference, which is one of the most respected conferences in the NAIA.  And it’s a plus that the SAC headquarters are located in Dallas.

Q:  Who will UNT Dallas play?

Jack:  Sooner Athletic Conference members include two local rivals — Texas Wesleyan University in Ft. Worth and Southwest Assemblies of God in Waxahachie.  Other SAC schools — and there are a dozen in all — include Oklahoma City University, Wayland Baptist, and Langston.  And we will also schedule local, non-SAC schools such as the University of Texas at Dallas and the University of Dallas.

Q:  Where will UNT Dallas teams play?

Jack:  While there are several options available to us, it is highly likely that we will play our home basketball games at Cedar Valley College.  CVC is nearby, has an exceptionally nice arena, locker rooms for both men and women, plenty or parking…..pretty much everything we want and need.  And we will run track at Gateway Charter Academy, which is an easy bike ride from our campus and has a first-rate, eight-lane running track.  Our cross country runners will probably train right here on our 268-acre campus.

Q:  Who will coach our teams?

Jack:  We have hired three exceptional leaders to head up our first programs:  Kenneth Royal for our cross country and track teams, Rodney Belcher for women’s basketball, and Josh Howard for men’s basketball.  We had over 300 applicants for these positions, and feel really fortunate to have such high-quality individuals representing UNTDallas and mentoring our student-athletes.

Q:  Are there plans to build any athletics facilities on campus?

Jack:  Yes.  We are in the process of updating the campus Master Plan.  When completed, the plan will include a cross country course and a lighted, turf soccer field surrounded by a state-of-the-art running track, as well as covered seating and locker rooms.  Plans also include a Special Events Center, with an arena, fitness center, athletics offices, academic space, athletics offices, and adjacent multi-story parking garage.  The SEC will be ideal for athletics, but will also serve other university needs such as a home for events such as graduation, concerts, banquets, etc.  A baseball/softball complex, and tennis courts, are also included in the master plan.

Q:  What excites you most about having athletics on the UNT Dallas campus?

Jack: Athletics will have an extremely positive impact on every aspect of our university and the community it serves.  Believe me — athletics is a game changer.