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Loyola Goes to Past for Athletic Director--It’s Woodbridge’s Quinn

Times Staff Writer

After sifting nearly 80 applications from across the nation, Loyola Marymount University reached into its past to place its athletic future in the hands of Brian Quinn.

Quinn was announced as the new athletic director this week and takes over July 1. He resigned as assistant principal at Woodbridge High to return to the Westchester campus where he was a basketball and baseball star in the early 1960s. He graduated with a degree in business administration in 1963.

Quinn, 43, has remained an active alumnus and booster and his oldest son, Andy, attends Loyola.

In a press conference, Quinn said he hopes to tap his intimate knowledge of Loyola and its alumni to move the program “in the direction of excellence.”

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“I feel I can bring back a number of the alumni who are out there. There are people who are very influential in Los Angeles, lawyers and doctors, who are ready to come back. They’re waiting for us to turn the corner.”

Quinn replaces Robert Arias, who has accepted a different post at Loyola after five years as athletic director. Under Arias the school made strides in upgrading to Division I in all sports and built a new fieldhouse and new baseball stadium. But most Loyola teams have found success tantalizingly out of reach, and attendance in the new facilities has lagged.

Quinn said he does not necessarily equate excellence or improvement with matching the feats of other parochial schools such as Georgetown or Marquette, which have won national basketball titles in the last decade. “I don’t see that as a goal,” he said. “What I want to do is run a class program within the philosophy, budget and rules of the West Coast Athletic Conference. We need to be as successful as we can be in Los Angeles. I know that the university can do that.”

Quinn, looking trim and youthful, sporting short, curly red hair and a ready smile, appears articulate, confident, knowledgeable and--above all--enthusiastic. It may be that last quality that made him the choice of the school’s president, Father James N. Loughran, from four finalists. Quinn, who helped assist in the creation of University, Irvine and Woodbridge high schools in Orange County, has a master’s degree in secondary education from Cal State Long Beach and has held a series of education and administrative positions in the Irvine school district.

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Quinn said the early emphasis will be on success in the most visible sports--men’s basketball and baseball, women’s basketball and volleyball--but he said he has not discussed any changes with Loughran and will spend the summer examining “needs assessments” with coaches before making decisions.

“I’m not here to put people in the seats. The teams will put people in the seats if they’re successful,” Quinn said. “We need to be successful in those four (sports). I do feel if you are successful (in athletics) the school prospers.

Quinn was a three-year starting guard in basketball and three-year starting center fielder in baseball at Loyola after winning all-league honors in both sports at Serra High in Gardena. As a sophomore in 1960-61 he played on Loyola’s last WCAC champ and last 20-game winner in basketball.

He coached several sports at St. Bernard and St. Anthony high schools before moving to Orange County.

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