Written By: Devin Garner
Following the retirement of longtime athletic director Scott Devine, the school welcomes back former St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) women’s basketball coach Crystal Gibson as the new Athletic Director. According to Inside SMCM, Gibson spent the last three years at Susquehanna University as the associate director of athletics and the interim director of athletics.
Gibson is no stranger to SMCM athletics as she previously served as the women’s basketball coach from 2011 to 2017. When asking Gibson what brought her back to the school, she stated, “St. Mary’s always felt like a special place to me, from the first time I interviewed here nine years ago for the head women’s basketball position. The people, the eagerness and intelligence of the students and the ability to communicate across campus are all things that brought me here initially and I was very excited to be able to return.”
She brings an impressive resume into her tenure at St. Mary’s. Following her graduation, Gibson began working in athletics at Lebanon Valley College. At Lebanon Valley, she held numerous roles including assistant women’s basketball coach, assistant track and field coach and worked directly with the athletic director. After leaving Lebanon Valley, she went onto Frostburg State University to become the top assistant coach for the women’s basketball team. After gaining experience at Frostburg State, she went on to become the head women’s basketball coach at Arcadia University in Pennsylvania where she also served as the assistant sports information director. Upon leaving Arcadia, she came to SMCM to become the head women’s basketball coach and even held the senior woman administrator position, where she helped to establish the first Title IX review. Following her time at SMCM, she became the associate director and then interim director at Susquehanna University. In regards to the abundance of experience that she brings to St. Mary’s, Gibson remarks: “It has been a journey, but an amazing ride. I cannot wait to continue here.”
With the abundance of experience that Gibson comes in with, she is sure to handle the responsibilities of athletic director in stride. At SMCM, she holds duties such as overseeing and supporting coaches and staff, departmental budgets, staffing, and working with numerous offices across campus. She must also stay informed with NCAA regulations.
Gibson also has goals for her tenure at SMCM. She argues: “I want to continue to push the envelope and improve athletics and student-athletes relationships across campus. I believe by working together it only makes this amazing place even better.” She states that there are three big initiatives that she has pushed for her staff since arriving. Those include the areas of diversity and inclusion, mental health awareness and leadership development. She also states, “I want to continue providing and improving on the experience of our student-athletes, from game environment, to competitiveness, to growth in and outside their support.”
While Gibson has a lot of goals in mind, she acknowledges the phenomenal staff that she has in place already. She glowingly states, “I believe we have an amazing group of coaches and staff members in the athletic department, all working together to try and achieve the same mission, providing a first-class experience for our student-athletes.” When continuing to ask her if her previous history of coaching women’s basketball will lead her into assisting the SMCM women’s basketball team, she remarks, “I plan to be an amazing fan!”
With an abundance of experience and a love for SMCM, it is obvious that the college chose the perfect person for the job. Gibson will be sure to provide student-athletes and students a college athletic experience like no other.