CU alumnus John “Rocko” DeLuca has been promoted to assistant athletic director for development under Jim Senter. This was announced on Sept. 27, and DeLuca is excited for the challenges that lie ahead of him.
29-year-old DeLuca has been working with the CU for five years. Before the promotion, he had held the title as the Buff Club director since October 2004.
“As the Buff Club, we’re the umbrella organization for annual fundraising and all athletic fundraising for the University. I focus on our annual support, which is trying to increase donor funds or scholarship costs, as well as operational cost for the athletic department,” DeLuca said. “I’m in charge of 6,000 donors and try to take care of their needs.”
DeLuca graduated from CU with a kinesiology degree in 1999. When asked about his degree he chuckled and quickly stated that it has been renamed to integrative physiology.
“I didn’t get a new diploma though,” DeLuca said.
“My kinesiology degree allowed me to get my foot in the door in professional sports,” DeLuca said. ” My experiences as a kinesiology student went hand-in-hand as a student trainer. That background probably put me a little ahead of the game.”
DeLuca then landed a job working for the Denver Broncos after graduation.
“Working with the Broncos was awesome. I was fortunate to work for them at the old Mile High stadium, and my main focus for a year was working on the transfer of seats to the new stadium,” DeLuca said. “It was fun wearing a hard hat and being around the old stadium.”
A love for the outdoors shows through his hobbies as well.
“I’m an avid golfer. I spend a lot of free time playing golf,” DeLuca said. “I also like to fish. Fly fishing is my passion outside of college athletics.”
As the new assistant athletic director for development he is grateful for his position and hopes to provide as much positive progress to the CU athletic program as possible.
“It was very nice of Mike Bohn, Jim Senter and the leadership of the CU foundation to give me this opportunity at a young age,” DeLuca said.
As for the Buff Club director, DeLuca has dropped the official title, but he will still provide direction and some services to the Buff Club.
Many of his responsibilities will remain the same, and his main goal is still to contact as many donors as possible within the calendar year.
“What we’re hoping to do is grow and grow tremendously,” DeLuca said.
DeLuca hopes his passion for his positions at CU will help to improve the school with the goals he had set forth.
“My job is building relationships that eventually grow into people giving back to the university” DeLuca said. “It’s all about people. If we’re not helping (donors) feel good about their support, regardless of the gift level, we’re not doing a good job.”
As for the future, DeLuca hopes to see the CU athletic program grow and prosper in the coming years.