Kevin O’Connell is in his 10th year at South Carolina and his third year as the chief operating officer for Gamecock Athletics. O’Connell serves as the sport administrator for baseball, men’s and women’s soccer and men’s basketball, while he also oversees new athletic construction, facilities and game operations. O’Connell has most recently focused his concentration with facilities on the “Athletic Facilities Master Plan.” O’Connell came to South Carolina after spending six years at TCU as the associate athletics director of external operations. He was responsible for the Frogs’ marketing and promotions, the TCU Sports Network, media relations, ticket operations, the community outreach program and served as the primary liaison with ESPN Regional Television. Additionally, he oversaw the TCU men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s swimming & diving and men’s and women’s track & field programs.
During O’Connell’s tenure, the Horned Frogs showed attendance growth in nearly every sport. TCU posted three of the top six football season attendance totals in school history. The women’s basketball program boasted the top-ranked home season attendance figure in Conference USA four straight years and was ranked 32nd nationally in 2004-2005 with an average attendance of 3,462. TCU baseball averaged its highest attendance in school history during the 2005 campaign.
O’Connell moved to TCU from Miami (Ohio) University, where he spent four years as an associate athletics director. Prior to his stint at Miami, O’Connell served as president and chief operating officer of the ITG Travel Companies in Raleigh, N.C.
Before assuming his duties with ITG in 1989, the Falls Church, Va., native served eight years at North Carolina State, the last three as associate athletics director. O’Connell began his professional career with the Washington (D.C.) Diplomats of the North American Soccer League in 1977, working in various positions.
A 1975 graduate of Virginia Tech, O’Connell earned a master’s degree in sports administration from Ohio University in 1977. He and his wife, Becky, have three children and three granddaughters. Daughter Becca, a 2014 graduate of South Carolina, son Brent who lives in Columbia, and daughter Shannon, a graduate of Oklahoma State University with a masters in counseling. Shannon’s husband, Kyle Van Heest, is a pilot in the United States Navy and is stationed at Naval Station Norfolk. Kyle and Shannon are the proud parents of daughters, Margaret Lillian Van Heest, Alice Virginia Van Heest and Frances Blythe Van Heest.