LAWRENCE — One of Kansas Athletics’ most tenured and well-known figures is on the move.
Andrea Hudy, the Jayhawks’ assistant athletics director for sports performance and since 2004 the strength and conditioning coach for the men’s basketball program, has accepted a position with Texas, Bill Self confirmed Thursday night in a text message to The Topeka Capital-Journal. The Kansas City Star first reported Hudy’s departure.
“Kansas means the world to me," Hudy said in a news release. "I have had the most amazing experience during my time as a Jayhawk, and will always be grateful for the people I had the opportunity to work alongside. There are so many people I have come across at KU who have helped push me forward in my career, and made an impact in my life in numerous ways."
Texas formally announced the hiring Friday afternoon, naming Hudy the head coach of men's and women's basketball strength and conditioning effective Monday.
“Andrea Hudy has played a pivotal role in our success over the last 15 years," Self said. "Andrea informed me Wednesday night that she was visiting with the University of Texas about a position a little bit different than the one she had with us at the University of Kansas. I saw it as potentially a good opportunity for her. While I’m disappointed she is leaving, I am also excited for her, and I know our players will be as well.
"Bottom line is, we hate to lose her, but we understand that she has a great opportunity to grow and do something new professionally. We wish her the best, and we look forward to seeing her during the Big 12 season.”
Hudy said there "are not words to adequately describe" her gratitude toward Self.
"His unwavering faith in me allowed me to truly make an impact with our players, and that is the work I am proudest of," Hudy said. "Working in college athletics is unique because of the opportunity to make a difference in student-athletes’ lives. At Kansas I was able to do just that, and I will cherish those relationships for the rest of my life."
In addition to helping the Jayhawks to a national championship and three Final Four appearances, Hudy in 2013 was named the National College Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), which cited her strides made in deploying safe and effective science-based training programs. In 2017, Hudy received the NSCA's Impact Award, given to individuals who have helped advance national or international strength and conditioning or fitness industries.
Had she remained at KU, Hudy's job would have looked slightly different this fall.
KU in May announced a "groundbreaking" collaboration with University of Kansas Health System and LMH Health called Kansas Team Health, aiming to minimize potential conflicts of interest between medical personnel and the university's coaches and administrators. Under the policy, Hudy and about 40 other sports medicine staffers — other strength and conditioning coaches, physicians, athletic trainers, nutritionists and wellness coordinators — were to be converted to employees of University of Kansas Health Systems, reporting to medical professionals rather than athletic department personnel.
“We appreciate Coach Hudy’s contributions to the Kansas Athletics and are proud that she has been recognized nationally as a role model for young women who are interested in sports performance," KU athletic director Jeff Long said. "We wish her well as she pursues other challenges. We will work with Coach Self and Kansas Team Health to find another outstanding strength and conditioning coach who will help our student-athletes be their very best.”
Hudy, who published her first book, Power Positions, in 2014, spent nine-plus years with UConn before coming to KU, helping the Huskies to eight national championships (two in men's basketball, five in women's basketball and one in men's soccer).