Sun Belt Commissioner Wright Waters announces retirement

Wright Waters

Brad Stephens

Sun Belt Conference commissioner Wright Waters announced Wednesday that he’s retiring effective July 1, 2012.

Waters, the fourth commissioner in league history, has held the position since December 1998.

“It has been a great honor to serve the Sun Belt Conference membership during my time as commissioner,” he said in an official league release. “I would like to thank the presidents of our institutions and all of the athletic administrators on our campuses for this wonderful opportunity that I was provided.

“There are no sinister reasons for this announcement. There are still things that I would like to do with my life.”

The big moment of Waters’ tenure came in 2001, when the Sun Belt began sponsoring football.

In the 10 years since, the league has become affiliated with the New Orleans Bowl and the GoDaddy.com Bowl.

Under Waters, the Sun Belt added Troy, Middle Tennessee State, Louisiana-Monroe, North Texas and Florida Atlantic.

However, during his time as commissioner the league saw the departure of Louisiana Tech, New Orleans and Denver.

Waters also brought in football-only members Idaho and Utah State, but both left the league in 2005.