Matthew Finley was named Senior Associate Director of Athletics in July, 2016.
During the first year of service as a Trojan, Finley completed a certificate of certification in the NAAC Division II Education program that is designed for athletic compliance professionals, represented Anderson University at the 2017 NCAA Convention as well as attended the NAAC Convention. Finley also is leading a strategic implementation of the most innovative software for college athletic departments with the recently signed contractual agreement in May of 2017 with ARMS Software. The investment in ARMS Software has been a tool to create new efficiencies, unite the department, automate processes, and assist in implementing institutional control for the athletic compliance office. In March, 2018, Finley was appointed to the NCAA Division II Coaching Enhancement Grant Selection Committee. His term of service is to run from September 1, 2018 through August 31, 2022.
In the summer of 2017, Finley was placed on the NAAC Convention Committee and was appointed to a one-year term that has a possibility to renew each year beginning August 2017. Committee members are responsible for the planning and development of NAAC’s annual summer convention. This group develops the session topics, secures presenters, and coordinates logistics with the NACDA staff to produce a beneficial event annually for the Compliance profession. Additionally, he was selected as a recipient for the 2017 NACDA and Affiliates Fall Forum Grant, which will provide a stipend to attend the event in Boston, Mass., in November. Additionally, Finley served as a Title IX investigator during the 2016-17 Academic Year and is now assisting the University as a Deputy Administrator for Title IX in the 2017-18 Academic Year. Finley is also helping to coordinate compliance with the new Title IX Requirements implemented by the NCAA for all student-athletes and athletic staff at the University.
He was named to the prestigious NCAA Division II Committee for Legislative Relief in September, 2018. Members are elected to the five-member committee based on their knowledge of Division II rules and regulations (primarily in amateurism, recruiting, transfers and financial aid), and their experience as an administrator in intercollegiate athletics, including at least three years at a Division II institution or conference.
The committee serves as the final decision-making body for any waiver requests in situations where no other committee, subcommittee or conference has the authority to act. The committee grants relief of legislation when extenuating circumstances exist or may determine that relief should not be granted and also may impose conditions when relief of the legislation is granted.
As a member of the committee, Finley will participate in conference calls, as needed, and shall attend one or two in-person meetings per year. He will serve on the committee through August 31, 2021 and will be eligible to be reappointed for an additional three-year term.
Finley also helped implement new leadership development and career building opportunities for the SAAC committee on Anderson’s campus when joining the group as Co-Advisor alongside SWA Julie Carlson during the 2017-18 Academic Year. The SAAC has a key role on campus as a voice for the student-athlete to the athletic administration, has influence on NCAA legislation, SAC meetings and plays a key role in community engagement and fundraising for the Make-A-Wish program. SAAC members also have participated throughout the year for opportunities in personal and professional growth including but not limited to: the NCAA’s DISC Workshop Program, Operation Get Smart, and ScanSource’s Career Development Programming. During the 2017-18, academic year Finley has also helped to write a new student-athlete handbook and has worked to implement the NCAA My Playbook programming for all freshman student-athletes.
Prior to joining Anderson University, Finley served four years at the helm of the Newberry athletic program as Director of Athletics. He engineered Newberry's induction to the Eastern College Athletic Conference for its field hockey and wrestling programs, with the Wolves participating in the ECAC's awards programs and postseason tournaments. The football program was named the 2015 ECAC Division II Team of the Year and the women's soccer team participated in the 2015 ECAC postseason tournament. He also oversaw the addition of varsity field hockey and the Scarlet Poms dance team in 2013.
Fundraising efforts were a point of emphasis with Finley, with the Wolves' annual giving increasing each of his last four years. He was named to the NCAA Division II Field Hockey Committee in 2015 and previously served on the regional advisory committee for women's golf, while also serving as the athletic director liaison to the South Atlantic Conference's men's and women's tennis coaches' committee and the ECAC Division II Wrestling League's coaches' committee.
During Finley's stint as Director of Athletics, Newberry was a fixture in the postseason, with the football team earning a berth in the NCAA D-II Playoffs in two of his last three years and the women's basketball team edging the Trojans, while claiming the SAC Tournament title in 2014.
The 2013 campaign was a banner year for the Wolves, as the Scarlet and Grey volleyball team advanced to the second round of the NCAA Southeast Regional, while the women's golf squad captured the league championship and the wrestling team earned the NCAA Super Region I Championship.
Finley was named an assistant wrestling coach at Newberry in 2005 and assumed the additional roles of athletic ticket manager and was later promoted to the director of tickets and promotions, while also serving as a special assistant to the assistant athletic director for internal operations.
He was promoted to associate head wrestling coach in July, 2008, serving as director of recruiting and an expanded role for the nationally-ranked wrestling program which finished as high as 2nd at the NCAA Division II Championships in addition to multiple runner-up finishes at the NWCA Division II National Dual Meet Championships. In February 2010, Finley was named assistant athletic director for business and was responsible for the coordination for all of the department's day-to-day business functions including budget reconciliation, purchasing requests and athletic department ticketing. He was also responsible for the coordination and game management of all home events.
A little more than a year later, Finley was promoted to associate athletic director for compliance and academic services, serving as the senior compliance administrator. He also had oversight over tickets and promotions, internal operations, and served as executive secretary with the Newberry College Lettermen's Club. Finley was promoted to Interim Athletic Director in the summer of 2012 before being named the director of athletics in the fall of 2012 at Newberry College.
Finley was the founder of the Clemson club wrestling program, where he took on the role of director of operations as well as head coach and is an experienced wrestling official with previous experience officiating for both the South Carolina High School League and the NCAA. He wrestled for North Carolina State, where he was a member of the 2001 Atlantic Coast Conference championship team. He also had a successful high school career where he was a three-time state placer and an undefeated state champion at Hillcrest High School, where he was also named to the NHSCA All American Academic Team.
"My family and I are excited to join the Anderson University family," said Finley. "I am particularly looking forward to helping make a positive difference in the student-athlete experience and look forward to working with a great staff. There are many exciting programs at Anderson University and I could not be more excited to join a great team. I would like to thank Bill D'Andrea for this opportunity and I am excited to join his staff and get to work for an outstanding group of student-athletes and coaches."
Finley graduated with a bachelor's degree from Clemson in 2004, majoring in animal and veterinary sciences with minors in agricultural business and education. In 2008, Finley received his master of science in sports leadership from Duquesne.
Finley is married to the former Jennifer Lauren Triplett and they reside in the upstate with their two children, Charlotte, four, and Briggs, two.