Go Utes!
Go Utes!
Go Utes!

Student-Athlete Support Services


Mary Bowman

Mary Bowman Mary Bowman joined the staff in June of 1996 as Director of Student Athlete Support Services and Life Skills Coordinator.  In 2002 she was elevated to Assistant Athletic Director/Senior Women’s Administrator and now serves as Senior Associate Athletic Director/SWA. 

In her present capacity she oversees athletic training, strength & conditioning, academic services, life skills, sports nutrition, equity issues, volleyball, soccer, skiing and softball.   She has served on numerous committees on campus as well as other community organizations. 

In addition to her U of U commitments, she is presently a member of the NCAA Ski Committee, volleyball liaison for the Pac-12 and Woman of the Year Committee for the Pac-12.   She has also served on the NCAA Softball Selection Committee and was a NCAA Life Skills facilitator for the National Leadership Conference.  She continues her involvement with softball serving as an NCAA site representative for the softball regionals and super regionals. 

An Iowa native, Bowman earned a bachelor’s degree in education from the University of Northern Colorado while participating in basketball as a student athlete.   As a teacher in Colorado, she also coached volleyball, basketball and track.

In 1989 she received her Master’s in Education from the University of Utah in Educational Psychology.  She later became a guidance counselor at Clayton Middle School and then East High School in the Salt Lake School District. 

In her leisure time she enjoys gardening, biking and yoga.  She has two sons, J.J. who lives in Portland, Oregon, and Chris who lives in
Salt Lake City. 


Erik Weierholt

Erik Werierholt Erik has been with Utah Athletics since 2007 and began in the compliance department. from 2009-2010, he joined Utah Valley University Athletics as the Director of Compliance and Student Services. Erik returned to Utah Athletics as the Director of Compliance in 2010. Starting in 2012, he moved to academics where started his current position of Director of Academics. He earned his undergraduate degree from Utah Valley University and his JD from the University of Utah.  Beyond serving as the director of academic services, Erik also coordinates the athletic staff tailgates before football games. Erik is a native of Seattle, Washington and lives in Saratoga Springs, Utah with his wife Deanna and his three sons; Kris, Dallin and Luke.

Erik's sport responsibility is Football. 

Al Reiser

Al Reiser Al has been with Utah since 2010.  Before coming to Utah, he worked as an academic specialist with Indiana University Athletics.  He has a bachelors degree in English and masters degrees in Higher Education Administration and Athletic Administration.  Though he did not compete in an NCAA sport, Al spent ten years playing and coaching ultimate frisbee.  During his career, he played at the collegiate and semi-pro levels, and he coached both high school and college teams.  In his free time, Al likes to read, watch movies and generally criticize pop culture. 

Al's sport responsibilities are Football, Mens and Womens Skiing.

Colby Vranes

Colby Vranes Colby began with Utah Athletics in 2010 as Intern with Academics.  Starting in 2011, he began working as a learning specialist the folowing year he accepted a position as an Academic Advisor.  Colby earned his Bachelors degree Managerial Communications from Seattle Pacific University.  He played basketball basketball at both the junior college and division II level. Colby is a native of Taylorsville, Utah and currently lives in Salt Lake City, Utah with his wife Aleese.

Colby's sport responsibilities are Mens and Womens Basketball as well as Mens and Womens Tennis. 

Taryn Horner

Taryn Horner Taryn began with Utah Athletics as an Academic Advisor in Spring of 2012 although she is not new to the Utah family.  Taryn is a former Utah Volleyball and Diving letter winner for the Utes, competing from 2000-2003 and serving one year as the volleyball student- assistant coach while earning her bachelors degree in Exercise Sport Science Pedagogy.

She returns to Utah from Hawaii, where she served as a Physical Education teacher and Volleyball coach at 'Iolani School.  She also served as the Dean of Students at Judge Memorial Catholic High School and has a Masters Degree in Education Foundations with an emphasis in private school administration from the University of Hawaii.  

Taryn's sport responsibilities are Womens Cross Country, Baseball, MensGolf, Gymnastics, and Womens Track and Field

Tivra Marks

Tivra Marks Tivra comes to us from Portland Oregon where she lived the last eight years.  After finishing her BA in Child and Family Studies, emphasizing in youth work, Tivra attended Portland State University (PSU) to receive a masters in Educational Leadership and Policy, with a specialization in Post secondary Adult Continuing Education (PACE).  Tivra worked in athletics at PSU working as a learning specialist for the most at-risk students.  Before working in athletics Tivra was the Program Supervisor for a dual diagnosis rehabilitation treatment center for 12-17 year olds and worked with adjudicated youth in transition.  Tivra has over 15 years of social work and  youth counseling experience and uses these skills on a daily basis. She loves working with student athletes and watching them gain the necessary academic confidence to strive for success on and off the field.

Tivra's sport responsibilities are Womens Soccer, Softball, Womens Volleyball, Mens and Womens Swim and Diving

Learning Specialists

Robb Ellis

Robb Ellis Robb started with Utah Athletics in July of 2012 as Learning Specialist for the Football team. Robb earned his bachelors degree from Corbin University in Interdisciplinary Studies and his Masters of Education degree from City University in Seattle, Washington.  Robb joins the Utah staff having previously served as a high school counselor and a job corps counselor. Robb is a native of Salem, Oregon and spent the past 10 years previous to Utah in Bellingham, Washington. Robb lives in Salt Lake City with his Wife Kelly and 3 children.

Mary Chris Finnigan

Mary Chris Finnigan Mary Chris Finnigan is in her first year as a Learning Specialist for the Football team. She earned her B.A. in Psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1992. While attending UCSB, she played on the women's basketball team during her first year and then the club lacrosse team thereafter. She lived in San Francisco following graduation and worked as an Employment Specialist for adults with disabilities. In 1995, she returned to her hometown of Salt Lake City and worked at a residential treatment facility for adolescents. She went on to get her M.Ed in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in School Counseling from the University of Utah in 2000. Immediately following, she worked at Judge Memorial Catholic High School for thirteen years in the Counseling Office. In 2005, she became the Director of Counseling while also continuing her individual work with students and families.

In her free time she helps run a USA swim program for underrepresented and economically disadvantaged youth that she and her husband founded; she loves to spend time with her children and family; she likes hiking and yoga; and she enjoys knitting while watching a swim meet.

TJ Sitake

TJ Sitake TJ joined the University of Utah staff in 2012. He earned his Bachelors degree as a Student-Athlete at Brigham Young University. TJ's experience includes time spent as an Academic Mentor for Student-Athletes at Utah State University and as a High School Teacher.

Life Skills

Ashley Lear

Ashley Lear Ashley currently serves as the Tutorial & Student-Athlete Affairs Coordinator for student-athletes at the University of Utah.  Prior to assuming this role, in May 2010, Ashley worked in the Athletics Compliance Office at Utah.

Ashley earned her B.A. in Psychology and Sociology from the University of Notre Dame, in 2003, and was a member of the women's soccer team during her time at Notre Dame.  She earned her J.D., from the University of Utah College of Law, in 2007, during which she served as a graduate assistant in the Athletics Compliance Office for two years.

Ashley and her husband, Ben, reside in Salt Lake with their two children, Briggs and Sophie.


Lauren Dudley Storer

Lauren has been a student athlete mentor since 2012 and is currently an Intern. She graduated in December 2012 with two bachelors degrees from the David Eccles School of Business in both Marketing and Business Administration. While pursuing her two degrees, Lauren played for the University of Utah's Women's Soccer team. Among her most memorable years was her senior season playing in the highly regarded Pac12 conference. 

Casey Sato

Casey has been with Utah since 2012 starting as a student athlete mentor and is now currently an Intern. Before coming to Utah, he was a student-athlete on the baseball team at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). He has a bachelors degree in Business Marketing. Casey, also attend the College of Southern Nevada earning a associates degree while also playing on the baseball team. 

Utah.edu Pac-12 Utah Utah Sports Properties