Sandy Sandago is in his 12th year at the helm of the Sports Medicine Department at USC Upstate. He was promoted from assistant athletics director to associate athletics director for sports medicine in 2007. He is the fifth full-time head athletic trainer at the University and the first to assume the duties as Associate AD for Sports Medicine. He also serves as a member of the senior athletics administrative staff.
Sandago works specifically with men's basketball, and men's and women's golf.
Sandago came to USC Upstate after working on the athletic training staff at Oregon State for 22 years. He joined the staff in 1984 and was promoted to head athletic trainer in 1992. He oversaw the athletic training services for all sports and directly handled the athletic training responsibilities for men's basketball and men's and women's golf. While in Oregon, Sandago began a close relationship with Nike research and development, a relationship that has continued in his current position at USC Upstate. He coordinates testing of new Nike footwear technology, utilizing various teams to gather input and analysis during practices throughout the year. He reports back to Nike R&D on the durability, wear and comfort of the products the company plans to release into the marketplace.
Prior to his 22-year stint at Oregon State, he was a teacher and athletic trainer at Maumee High School in Ohio. He also served as an assistant athletic trainer for the Seattle Seahawks during summer workouts from 1980-86. Sandago graduated with a bachelor's degree in physical education from Washington State University in 1979 and received his master's degree in health education from Miami University in 1983.
The Seattle, Wash., native graduated from Lynwood High School, where he lettered in three sports while serving as a student athletic trainer.
Sandago and his wife, Allyson, have two daughters, Emma and Anna. Allyson is also a certified athletic trainer and works with the Hawkins Foundation.