College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences; Office of the Provost

John DesJardins appointed interim director of Robert H. Brooks Sports Science Institute


John DesJardins, Ph.D.
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John DesJardins, Ph.D., has been appointed interim director of the Clemson University Robert H. Brooks Sports Science Institute (RHBSSI).

As part of this appointment, DesJardins will engage with Institute collaborators and campus leaders to develop and implement a new strategic plan to support the mission of the Institute.

John’s expertise will serve Clemson well as he engages with campus leaders to develop and implement a new strategic plan, supporting the Robert H. Brooks Sports Science Institute’s mission of serving as a multi-disciplinary platform for the academic study of sports sciences across the University.


About DesJardins

DesJardins is the Hambright Distinguished Professor in Engineering Leadership and a professor in the Department of Bioengineering. An Institute fellow since 2021, DesJardins completed many collaborative research projects with the assistance of RHBSSI seed funding, including a golf swing balance mechanics study, a wheelchair tennis match movement study, and a football head and helmet impact mechanics study.

DesJardins joined Clemson in 1998 as a research associate in Bioengineering. After receiving his Ph.D. in Bioengineering in 2006, he began a faculty position in 2008 in the area of biomaterials and biomechanical engineering. He has co-authored over 350 abstracts and journal publications, and mentored over 200 undergraduates, 33 master’s and 13 doctorate students in their research. His work is highly multi-disciplinary, with projects in orthopedics, biomaterials tribology, biomedical device design, sports biomechanics, rehabilitation, engineering education and mechanical testing.

A head and shoulders studio photo of a man, John DesJardins, who is smiling. He is wearing small framed glasses, coat, tie and a Clemson University Tiger Paw pin on the lapel of his coat.

“I have enjoyed serving as a fellow for the Institute and am excited to be stepping into the role of interim director for RHBSSI,” said DesJardins. “I am looking forward to working with collaborators across campus to develop a new strategic plan for the Institute. Our mission is to support and promote the work of students, staff and faculty towards enhancing the athletic experience at Clemson. Together we discover new ways to tell Clemson’s story through the narrative of sports, and share our successes one step at a time.”

DesJardins began his position on January 2, 2024. RHBSSI founding director, Brett Wright, Ph.D., will retire from Clemson May 15.


Thanks to the generosity of the late Robert H. Brooks, ’60, the Institute began in the 1990s with a founding emphasis on motorsports engineering, sports communication, sports management and sports marketing. Expanding to other disciplines across campus, the Institute seeks to define, enhance and promote the role of sports in academia and society. It provides experiential learning opportunities through academic programs, research, sports organizations and support for service and outreach programs. Through all of its activities, the Institute works to support the work of faculty, staff and students, disseminate knowledge, enhance the understanding of the significance of sport in modern society and prepare students to perform at the highest levels within sports industries.

Clemson University undertakes this mission out of deep respect for Robert H. Brooks and as testimony to his love for Clemson University and his love for sports.

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