Michael Dietz is the President and Founder of Dietz Sports & Entertainment in Farmington Hills, Michigan. Dietz founded Dietz Sports & Entertainment in 2003, after 17 years at Ilitch Holdings, Inc. with the Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Tigers, Olympia Entertainment, Fox Theatre, and Little Caesars Enterprises. As President, Dietz directs the day to day operations of the firm. Dietz earned his Bachelor’s of Business Administration Cum Laude from Western Michigan University (1983), where he played basketball for the Broncos (1979-1983). During his senior year, Dietz served as the Broncos team captain and earned the honors of 1st Team Academic All-MAC. He was also a member of the Mid-American Conference Championship Team in 1981. In 1987, Dietz received his law degree from Thomas Cooley Law School in Lansing. Dietz is highly involved in the community. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for CATCH (Caring Athletes Team for Children’s & Henry Ford Hospitals), a children’s charity that was founded by the late Sparky Anderson in 1987 as well as on the advisory board for Angel’s Place, an organization which helps provide homes and professional support for adults with developmental disabilities. Previously, Dietz served on the Board of Directors of the Detroit Police Athletic League (PAL). As a long time member at Oakland Hills Country Club, Dietz held titles of Vice Chairman on the Sales and Marketing Committee for the 2008 PGA Championship and Assistant Vice Chairman on the Sales and Marketing Committee for the 2004 Ryder Cup. In 2013, Dietz, along with former NBA player, Tim McCormick, founded the Michigan Elite 25 Basketball program, which aims to change the culture of youth basketball in Detroit and throughout the State of Michigan by encouraging the top players to create a winning game plan to strengthen their life skills and to help maximize their personal, academic and athletic goals and dreams.
Rick Chryst joined the firm in December of 2011 as Senior Vice President/Of Counsel, and is based in Cleveland, Ohio as part of Dietz Sports & Entertainment’s expanded offices. His primary area of concentration is in NCAA Division I intercollegiate athletics, focusing on a broad range of practice areas that include:
- Media rights analysis/negotiation
- Corporate marketing programs
- Major events (bowls, post-season tournaments)
- Departmental strategic planning, particularly in relation to the ongoing conference realignments.
Chryst came to Dietz Sports & Entertainment following two years in the sports law group of Cleveland-based Walter & Haverfield. Chryst has over 20 years experience in NCAA Division I conference work, having been an Assistant Commissioner in both the Southwest Conference (1989-92) and Atlantic Coast Conference (1992-99), before serving for a decade as the Commissioner of the Mid-American Conference (1999-2009). While at the MAC, Chryst also was appointed both Chair of the Division I-A conference commissioners (2003-05), as well as President of the Collegiate Commissioners Association (2005-07). Chryst holds a B.A. in Economics (Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Notre Dame, where he was also captain and most valuable player on the Irish baseball team as a senior (1983). He graduated from the Duke University School of Law (High Honors) in 1989.
Howard Krugel is the Vice President of Client Services for Dietz Sports & Entertainment. Krugel works with clients to evaluate sponsorship agreements and helps them to integrate sports marketing programs into their overall advertising budget. Prior to joining Dietz Sports & Entertainment, Krugel worked for Midnite Oil Creative, Little Caesars, the Detroit Tigers, the Detroit Red Wings, and PASS Sports. Krugel holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan (1991).
Bridget McCrackin currently serves as Manager for Dietz Sports & Entertainment. McCrackin is responsible for Sponsorship Activation, Event & Hospitality Management, as well as Athlete, Coach, & Celebrity Endorsements divisions of the firm. McCrackin works directly with Michael Dietz on the day to day operations of Dietz Sports. Before joining Dietz Sports & Entertainment, McCrackin worked in minor league baseball in an event and hospitality position. McCrackin graduated from Central Michigan University with a Bachelor degree in Sports Management and a minor in Business Administration.
Alisha Coku currently serves as Marketing Coordinator for Dietz Sports & Entertainment. Alisha is responsible for Sponsorship and Activation Services, Sponsorship Sales, Event & Hospitality Management, as well as Athlete Endorsements divisions of the firm. Before joining Dietz Sports & Entertainment, Alisha was a summer intern at Dietz Sports & Entertainment in 2018 & an intern for Michigan State Athletics Department fall 2018 – spring 2019. Alisha graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor degree in Kinesiology and two minors in Sports Business Management & Health Promotions.