One of the key people who helped keep the College World Series in Omaha is set to retire. Dennis Poppe is working his 26th and last CWS.
The NCAA announced Friday that Poppe is retiring effective January 1st.
Poppe started running the CWS in 1988, helping increase attendance and lead the renovation of Rosenblatt Stadium. He was also a key figure in helping convince Omaha to build TD Ameritrade Park downtown and lock in the 25-year contract that keeps the CWS in Omaha through 2035.
He'll be replaced by Damani Leech as the NCAA's vice president of championships and alliances, running the College World Series.
Poppe said his favorite memories include having his wife and children come to Omaha with him for two weeks each summer and seeing the joy on the faces of players as they celebrated winning national championships. ”I’m stealing from (Disneyland). At this time of year, this is the happiest place on earth.”