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Mississippi State Athletic Academics

Welcome to the team of Athletic Academics!  We are a group of athletic academic counselors, tutors, and administrative staff that are here to assist student-athletes in reaching all of their academic goals.  Our goal is to enable the student-athletes to reach full academic potential and to pursue whatever degree and/or degrees they choose.  Athletic Academics provides an environment which is conducive to learning and stimulates growth as a student and as an athlete.  We look forward to the success of our current and future student-athletes, both academically and athletically.

The Athletic Academic Staff will become involved in all phases of a student-athlete's academic career, including, but not limited to:

1. Course selection based on the student's abilities assessed from test scores and transcripts
2. Referral to University support programs
3. Monitoring of mid-term grades, grade point averages, completion of University core requirements, degree programs
4. Personal academic counseling as needed
5. Registration information
6. Assistance in development of a major
7. Goal development and achievement
8. Contact with University colleges and major advisors

The Office of Athletic Academics is housed in the Templeton Athletic Academic Center. It was completed in November 2008 and opened in the same month. The facility is an addition to two existing facilities in the athletic wing of the MSU campus - the Shira Complex and the Holliman Athletic Center. It is situated on the south side of those two facilities, and across the street from the Bryan Athletic Administration Building.

The 34,000 square-foot building serves the entire athletic department, houses the Athletic Academics offices and staff, and includes individual computer rooms, tutor work areas, a large open study area and a 300-seat dining facility with a fully-functioning kitchen.

Our Staff

CHRISTINE JACKSON - Assistant Athletic Director/Academics (Joined Staff - 2015)

Christine Jackson was named Mississippi State’s new assistant athletic director of academics in August 2015. She oversees MSU’s Templeton Athletic Academic Center and reports to the Office of the Provost as well as MSU Athletics.

Prior to joining MSU, Jackson served over 13 years at the University of Louisville, including in her most recent role since July 2012. As director of student services, Jackson coordinated the admissions process for football student-athletes. She was responsible for the academic needs of all freshmen and incoming transfer football student-athletes. She organized all aspects of the Kick Off Summer Bridge Program, which promoted academic success. She also supported the assistant athletic director with day-to-day operations of the Woodruff Academic Center and its staff.

Prior to her promotion in the summer of 2012, Jackson served as the director of football student-athlete development (2010-12), coordinating life-skills programming for all football student-athletes at Louisville.

Jackson was the associate director for academic services at Louisville from 2006-09 and responsible for the academic affairs of women's basketball, baseball, volleyball, field hockey, men's and women's golf as well as the spirit groups. Jackson also oversaw all financial and business matters of the Olga S. Peers Academic Center.

Jackson got her start in athletics at the University of Kentucky in 1999. During her three years in Lexington, she served in a variety of roles. She was the academic counselor for track and field, volleyball, rifle and men's tennis. She also served as the director of tutoring while also being an advisor to the student-athlete advisory committee.

Jackson earned her bachelor's degree in kinesiology in 1997 and her master's degree in sport management in 1999 -- both from the University of Kentucky.

Jackson and her husband Richard have three sons –Trey (13), Reese (11) and Rashawn (4).


LYNDA MOORE - Associate Director of Athletic Academics (Joined Staff - 2002)

Beginning her 14th year with the Mississippi State athletic family, Lynda Moore serves as the Associate Director and manages the day to-day academic requirements and needs of the Men's Golf program, after working with Men's Tennis for 13 years. Moore was promoted to Associate Director in July 2013.

Prior to that, she had served as the athletic academic counselor for Men’s Basketball for 12 seasons as well as working with Softball, Women’s Tennis, Men and Women’s Track, Women’s Golf and Volleyball throughout the years. Moore obtained her bachelor's degree in English in 1997 from Stetson University in Deland, Fla., and completed her Master’s degree from Mississippi College in 2012. She is currently pursuing her Phd in Human Sciences at MSU. Moore also served on the women's softball coaching staff at Belhaven College during the 1998 and 1999 seasons.

Born in Yazoo City, Mississippi, Moore is married to Sergeant First Class David Moore, who serves as a recruiter for the Army National Guard on the Mississippi State University campus. They are the parents of three sons - Rylan James, Corey Ross, and Tanner Ray - and one daughter - Lillie Brynn.



DANIEL MORGAN - Assistant Director of Athletic Academic Support Services (Joined Staff - 2009)

In his current duties Daniel manages the Tutorial and Study Hall services, manages all textbook distribution, serves as the office’s technology coordinator, as well as other administrative duties. Daniel was named Assistant Director for the Department of Athletic Academic Support Services in the fall of 2013 after serving as an Academic Counselor in charge of all Tutorial and Study Hall services since the spring of 2009.

Daniel also served the Department as a Graduate Assistant from 2007-2009. Daniel received his Bachelor’s Degree from Mississippi State in 1999 and his Master’s Degree in Sports Administration from Mississippi State in 2009.

Daniel relocated to Starkville in1995. Daniel is married to Karla Morgan and they have two sons, Cade and Carver.



KYLIE AMATO  - Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2009) 

Amato serves as the Academic Athletic Counselor for Football (Defense).

Prior to joining MSU, Amato served eight years at Florida State University. She began as a post masters internship working with Football and Men’s Basketball. After a year of being involved with their program, she was promoted to Academic Counselor for Women’s Basketball, Men and Women’s Swimming and Diving, Soccer, Softball and Men and Women’s Tennis. Two years later she was promoted to Assistant Director where she served as the Academic Counselor for Women's Basketball, Baseball and Women's Tennis. In addition to her role as counselor, she served as the bookstore liaison between Academic Athletic Advising and the University Bookstore ensuring all scholarship athletes received recommended textbooks and supplies for their courses, Advising Coordinator between Academic Athletic Advising and Advising First staff representative to FSU's Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC).

Amato, a native of Toomsuba, Mississippi, was a letter winner in volleyball at the University of West Alabama where she earned a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology. Moving into coaching thereafter, Amato joined the Northwestern State University Volleyball Program as a graduate assistant coach. While there, she earned her Master's Degree in Sports Administration. Wanting to further her education, Amato completed a second Master's through the University of West Alabama in Continuing Education with a concentration in Counseling/Psychology in December 2012. Amato is currently an active member of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A).

SAWYER BOWERING  - Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2013)

Sawyer Bowering, a native of Madison, Mississippi, graduated from Mississippi State University in 2010 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Teaching/Coaching and in 2013 with a Master’s Degree in Sport Administration. After graduating in 2010, she taught in the Madison County School District for two years where she also coached Volleyball, Basketball, and Track & Field.

Bowering began working with the Department of Athletic Academics as a Graduate Assistant in the summer of 2012 working with Men’s Basketball and Men’s Tennis. She also assisted with Housing Assignments for all student-athletes living on campus. Bowering is currently assigned to work with Softball and Men’s Basketball.



JAMIE GATHING - Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2013)

Jamie serves as the Athletic Academic Counselor for Women’s Basketball and Women’s Soccer programs.

Prior to joining MSU, Gathing was the academic advisor for several sports at Kennesaw State University from 2009-13. She also served as a mathematics teacher and basketball coach from 2005-07 at Gulliver Schools in Miami, Florida.

A native of Kankakee, Illinois, Jamie graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in business marketing and a Master of Science degree in sport administration from Indiana University. Gathing was also a member of the Indiana Hoosier’s women’s basketball team that captured the Big Ten Tournament title in 2002. Most recently, Jamie received her master’s certificate in academic advising from Kansas State University and is an active member of the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics (N4A).




LOGAN LINK - Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2014)

Link serves as the Athletic Academic Counselor for Football (Offense).

Prior to joining MSU, Link was the Assistant Director of Academic Services in Athletics at Eastern Illinois University. At Eastern Illinois, Link oversaw academic services for Football, Women’s Soccer, Softball and Men’s and Women’s Tennis. Prior to that, Link was an academic advisor in the College of Arts and Sciences at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, after serving as the Coordinator of Student-Athlete Services at Delta State University.

Link, a native of Lexington, Kentucky, spent two years as an undergraduate student manager for the Men’s Basketball program at the University of Arkansas before transferring to the University of Kentucky and serving as a student video coordinator for Women’s Basketball. Link completed his Bachelor of Arts in Education at the University of Kentucky, with a major in Psychology and a minor in History. He then spent two years as a graduate assistant for men’s basketball at Delta State University where he completed his Master of Education. He and his wife, Erica, have one son - Augustus Dean.


JIMMY GLASSFORD  - Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2013)

Jimmy serves as the Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor for Men’s & Women’s Tennis and Volleyball. He also oversees the physical class check program for MSU student-athletes. Before taking on these new responsibilities, from August 2013-Summer 2015, he served as Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor working with the athletic student workers and Men’s Tennis as well as serving as the Tutorial Coordinator for the Department of Athletic Academics during that time span.

Jimmy holds a bachelor’s degree in Sport Management from North Greenville University (May 2010) along with a master’s degree in Sport & Entertainment Management from the University of South Carolina (Dec 2011). Prior to graduating with his master’s degree, he started working in January 2011 as an academic intern with the South Carolina Dodie Anderson Academic Enrichment Staff. While interning, he assisted the athletic advisors with: track & field, football and swimming & diving. In addition to his sport duties he served as the Academic Monitoring Program Coordinator where his responsibilities entailed organizing and managing the student athlete class checking program.

Originally from Bowling Green, Ohio, Jimmy is married to Jordan Glassford.


SARA PARMAN  - Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2014)

Sara currently serves as the Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor for Men and Women’s Track. Prior to this responsibility, Sara served as the Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor for Women’s Soccer and was responsible for coordinating the graduate assistant program from August 2014-June 2015. Before joining the staff in 2014, Sara served as an intern and graduate assistant for The Department of Athletic Academics from 2012-2014.

Sara holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Peru State College, 2009, (Peru, Nebraska) in physical education K-12 and coaching. She is currently working on her Master’s in Human Sciences focusing specifically on youth studies and is expected to graduate December 2015.

Sara is married to Bryon Parman, who also works for Mississippi State University as an Assistant Extension Professor of Agricultural Economics, and they have one son, Caleb.



ROB SHILLITO  - Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor (Joined Staff - 2015)

Rob Shillito serves as the Assistant Athletic Academic Counselor for Baseball and Women’s Golf. Shillito also oversees the Graduate Assistants serving within the Department of Athletic Academics.

A native of Corinth, Mississippi, Rob graduated from Mississippi State University in 2011 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and in 2012 with a Master’s Degree in Sport Administration. From 2011 to 2012, he served the Department of Athletic Academics as Lead Graduate Assistant, working specifically with Football.

Rob is married to Jeane Carroll Shillito and they have one son, Luke.


ERICA SMITH - Learning Specialist (Joined Staff - 2012)

Smith directs the Athletic Academic Summer Bridge and Directed Study programs and works directly with tutors and student-athletes to discover effective learning styles that help develop proper study habits.

Prior to joining the Department of Athletic Academics, she taught 9th, 11th and 12th grades as well as American Novel and Creative Writing. She was also a senior class sponsor and Senior Research Project director. While at Noxubee County, Erica founded the co-ed varsity tennis program and in its second year, took the first boys doubles team from Noxubee County to the State Championship tournament. She served as the head tennis coach until moving to MSU in May 2012.

Originally from Brookhaven, Mississippi, Erica completed her Master's Degree in English Education in May 2013 from William Carey University. Smith is a 2009 graduate of MSU and a 2007 graduate of Copiah-Lincoln. Starkville has been her home for the past six years.


LESA BOWEN - Administrative Assistant I (Joined Staff - 2013)

Lesa serves as Administrative Assistant I for the Department of Athletic Academics, working closely with the Directors and Academic Counselors. She and her husband, Don, currently reside in Mathiston, Mississippi.



Jessica Cooley - Graduate Assistant
Jordan Cummins - Graduate Assistant
Kyle Fitting - Graduate Assistant (Lead)
John Galatas - Graduate Assistant
Brittany Noble - Graduate Assistant
Ron Pavlik - Graduate Assistant
Andrea Pierson - Graduate Assistant
Tanner Roberson - Graduate Assistant
Katherine Webb - Graduate Assistant


Contact Us

MSU Athletic Academics
P.O. Box 5327
Mississippi State, MS 39762
662-325-0589 (fax)
Location: Templeton Athletic Academic Center

View our brochure!

 Become an Athletic Academic Tutor

***Bulldog Athletic Academic Tutors Needed!***

Are you are extremely knowledgeable in Accounting, Biology, Chemistry, Communication, Economics, English, Finance, Geography, History, Math, Business, Kinesiology, Political Science, Psychology and/or Sociology? Are you looking for spending cash or a supplemental income? Do you have four to six extra hours per week? Do you enjoy helping others?

If so, please apply to be an Athletic Academic Tutor!

You can apply through the MSU Career Services website or by contacting Daniel Morgan (662-325-8125).





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