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New Michigan State Interim AD Beekman in an open letter, "I am committed to making sure we are doing all we can to provide a healthy and safe environment for student athletes, coaches, and staff. […] In the coming weeks, as President Engler has said, we will be moving swiftly to implement changes that will protect anyone affiliated with MSU from sexual assault, harassment, or bullying." Additionally, Beekman says he was "moved" by students in the Izzone wearing teal shirts recently to recognize those impacted by the Nassar developments. (link)
UConn AD Benedict was actually traveling in Asia with Nike when news hit about the Huskies MBB program being under NCAA investigation. Benedict yesterday, "We’re going to fight to protect our university brand. We’re going to fight to protect our men’s basketball program, because we believe that we have been doing all of those [proper] things and we’re very committed to compliance. […] The thing we need to do is wake up every day and have a commitment to compliance and that means we’re doing proper education for all of our coaches, all of our student-athletes, all of our staff. It means we are constantly pushing ourselves to learn how to manage those things." Further, Benedict notes a strong relationship with HC Ollie, points to after the season to review Ollie's performance & indicates he's spoken to former FB student-athlete Orlovsky, who took some shots at the department last week, "We had a great conversation. [Orlovsky] is a big part of our athletic history and tradition and I look forward to seeing him again." (link)
San Jose Mercury News reporter Wilner inks on potential candidates for Cal's AD search, says he does not have first-hand knowledge of who's in the mix, but here's his list: Northwestern Deputy AD Goff, Georgia Tech Assoc. VP for Development Hall, USF AD Harlan, UC Irvine boss Izzi, UCLA Senior Assoc. AD for External Affairs Rebholz, Texas A&M Deputy AD Rempe, former Oakland Raiders CEO Trask & longtime Golden Bears Men's Tennis HC Wright. (link)
The question that never sleeps (at least within media circles): Will the Big 12 expand? A handful of journalists provide their perspective on if there's any movement possible in the near future as the Dallas Morning News' Carlton expects the league to stay at 10 for the next decade. Dallas/Fort Worth media personality Scruggs says "no" for three reasons: 1) There's no "brand name" university add; 2) Current conference members don't want to split up the cash pot any further; and, 3) There is no Big 12 Network. (link)
We'll get our first look at the NCAA MBB Tourney's Top 16 seeds this Sunday. Committee chair & Creighton AD Rasmussen says his group has consensus on the three leading squads (Villanova, Virginia & Purdue), but there's a lot of work to be done on the other thirteen. Interesting note: "Rasmussen said the 10-person committee is broken up into three sub committees, one focusing on the first quadrant of teams (or the top 16), another on the bottom part of the bracket with all the automatic qualifiers and a third on the last four in and first four out." (link); Yahoo's Forde with his first 'Forde Minutes' of the hoops season, writes on elements missing from the game, like no LaVar Ball & "no certainty on where the ongoing federal investigation stands." Runs through categories of coaches ready to break through the top tier & others not doing so hot, as well as checking in on the state of all major conferences. (link, link)
The traditional FB signing day is upon us & The All-American's Olson provides analysis on the how the first early signing addition impacted the marketplace. Kansas HC Beaty calls it the most satisfying recruiting cycle he's been a part of, however, SEC Commish Sankey chimes in, "I understand the reasons people supported early signing. I understand their perspective on the benefits. I'm not sure the trade-offs completely justify what we've done. [...] My desire, my hope, my expectation is we've said after a couple years we'll review the early signing process and I hope that’s a meaningful review that considers all of these factors." More. (link); Here's Stanford HC Shaw via 1.Question on how he approaches the recruiting process. Advocates coaches to maintain maturity throughout the process & notes challenges in communicating with today's prospective student-athletes. (link)
Deals: Tailgate Guys continues its growth, this time into Major League Baseball as the Texas Rangers are added to the partner portfolio. (link); The Aspire Group & Georgia Tech ink a multi-year extension. Yellow Jackets boss Stansbury: "As we continue to integrate our ticket and donor operations, we’re appreciative and excited that Aspire is also now a part of our efforts to serve those who wish to support Georgia Tech athletics through the A-T Fund." (link); IMG College Licensing & IMG Fashion are teaming on a neat experience for students from 12 partner schools that will go behind-the-scenes at the upcoming New York Fashion Week. (link)
Full transcript of yesterday's Disney earnings call. Most important for us is CEO Iger's note of the new ESPN Plus subscription platform costing $4.99 per month once it comes online, as well as a revamped ESPN app in the very near future. Further, "This subscription service will feature thousands of additional live events, giving fans access to more leagues, more teams and more games than ever before, including Major League Baseball, Major League Soccer and the NHL, along with a rich array of college sports, as well as Grand Slam Tennis, Boxing, Golf, Rugby and Cricket, that aren't available on the ESPN linear networks." Ad revenue for the Worldwide leader was down 11% on the quarter, but partially due to how the College FB Playoff schedule fell. Lots more. (link)
Sports management professors Brunette (Iowa) & Watanabe (Ole Miss) pen on effective strategies for cultivating current students as long-term university & athletics donors. Wrap-up: "Athletic programs serve as important tools in providing rich experiences to students. However, they are not the only campus department that strengthens the student-university relationship or donation intentions. In this manner, it may be in the interest of both a university and its athletic department in the long run to strategically work together to develop future alumni donors. By instilling a feeling of institutional attachment, across an array of departments, activities, and experiences, students may be more willing to donate to both academic and athletic causes in the future. As mentioned, split donors have been shown to give more often and over a longer period of time than donors who restrict gifts to only one department. Thus, the most consistent fundraising approach to develop alumni donors may hinge on providing students with memorable academic and athletic experiences, positive emotions, and feelings of inclusivity that allow them to develop a meaningful relationship with the university and its athletic department as one." Lots more. (link)
Experiencing the World presented by Anthony Travel
The Ivy League has 35 athletes & coaches with ties in PyeongChang for the Winter Olympics. Dartmouth leads the way with 15 as seven of eight institutions are represented. (link); Gonzaga works a deal with J Sports in Japan to broadcast MBB contests as student-athlete Hachimura continues to play a role in the Bulldogs' success. GU AD Roth notes some experience with this sort of engagement as former student-athlete Karnowski had a strong following in his native Lithuania. More Roth: "Rui is such a big star in Japan, I’m not sure any of us can comprehend how big he is there. I’ve got to believe he’s excited about this and the opportunity for his friends and family and country to see him play live." (link)
presented by Anthony Travel
Georgia fan & statistician Phillips wrote a letter to Bulldogs AD McGarity on the increasing FB season ticket costs for next season & concluded, "The required minimum donation and increased price will put us at an average of $105.71 per ticket, when the next highest price (including minimum donation) is $82.14 per ticket. The average per-ticket price (of the minimum price available) for all of the other SEC schools is $54.42. Your new pricing has the lowest price available for Georgia tickets at almost double the average! You will also note that we have the very highest minimum donation in the SEC.  Florida is the next highest, and at $150, our minimum requirement is nearly double that amount!" Philips' breakdown includes some nifty & useful charts with comparative research against other SEC members & notable national brands. McGarity with a lengthy response, notes an increase in the number of home games next season & a 2017 average price point that was in the bottom third of the SEC. Also, "I don’t think there was anything that we did that was in a dishonest way. Our goal was just to be fully transparent with everyone. We presented it as best we could with the information that was solid and indisputable. The other was just so complex that I don’t know how you get your hands around that. Everyone knows the Hartman Fund was in play. It wasn’t a situation where we were trying to run away from anything at all. It was just strictly focused on the face value of the tickets." Lots more. (link)
Iowa AD Barta provides feedback on what he would do differently in connection to heat around an extension for MBB HC McCaffery. Barta runs through marketplace & timing dynamics behind the move, notes he would have liked to have gotten it done before the season started or after its completion, also points to security in knowing McCaffery would never been involved in developments of the MBB-FBI variety. More Barta: "I know people are questioning me. I can’t speak to how people feel about my credibility. I think over 12 years, I’ve proven that I care. Even though we didn’t announce it, the transparency was still there. We had several people request the contract, and we gave it to them as soon as they asked. Every time I make a decision, someone is upset about it. So, if over 12 years enough people have been upset about enough of my decisions, the word credibility, I can’t answer that. I show up every day and I make decisions based on what I think is best, what I think is right. Most of the time, hopefully, it’s right. Sometimes, it isn’t perfect, but we keep moving forward." (link)
Another day in the Derby City as reports surface that former Louisville AD Jurich has lobbied Governor Bevin to engage the university on his behalf to settle the pair's contract dispute. As you might expect, there's more angst from some on what role state government really has in the matter as The Courier-Journal's Sullivan adds, "Though Jurich has yet to file suit in an effort to recoup the estimated $15 million in future earnings called for in his contract and its various amendments, members of his inner circle are privately pessimistic about the prospects of a negotiated settlement." (link)
Western Illinois brings alum Bubb back to Macomb to serve as Executive Director of Development for the university. Most recently, Bubb was Assoc. AD for Development at Cal Poly Pomona (DII), but his portfolio also includes stops at Murray State, Idaho State (AD 2005-08), Maine (Interim AD 2002-03), Boise State and Cal State Northridge (AD 1995-98). WIU VP for Advancement and Public Services Bainter: "We welcome Paul to the Division of Advancement and Public Services and Western Illinois University. Paul's many years of fundraising experience within higher education will further enhance and strengthen the University's development efforts and initiatives." (link)
Here are all the details around the new seven-year, $49M deal for Auburn FB HC Malzahn. Seventy-five percent is fully guaranteed, if he were to leave the university for another opportunity the buyout ranges from $7M to $1M depending on the timing. Due $6.7M next season, a figure that increases by $100K for each subsequent year of the agreement. A bit more. (link); USC FB HC Helton also inked an extension that could keep him with the Trojans through 2023. Naturally, no financial details offered. (link)
More Personnel: The Wisconsin Board of Regents meets this week to consider salary bumps for FB HC Chryst (slated for $3.3M next season), OC Rudolph (currently $650K) and DC Leonhard (currently $600K) and "board will also consider changes to the employment agreements" for AD Alvarez (current salary $1.125M) and WBB HC Tsipis (current salary $625K). (link); Georgia Tech MBB AC LaBarrie steps down, has been on paid leave since November. LaBarrie: "The NCAA review is taking longer than any of us would have hoped for. Therefore, as a Georgia Tech graduate who loves the school, I recently resigned my assistant coaching position with the program to alleviate one of the many distractions that the team has had to deal with this season." (link); Things escalated quickly at the end of the New Mexico vs. Boise State MBB game late last night and Lobo's HC Weir apologized for his side's part in the shoving contest. (link, link); Check out Mississippi State Baseball HC Cannizaro's pregame pep talk for the WBB squad ahead of its win over South Carolina earlier this week. I suppose another HC addressing a team pre-game happens more than I'm aware. (link)
The Connected Fan sponsored by From Now On
Texas Football's Twitter account was suspended yesterday morning, but quickly got reinstated on the eve of Signing Day. (link); FloSports will aid the Big Ten Network in streaming the Big Ten's Men's & Women's Indoor Track & Field Championships later this month. (link); YouTube saw an 80% year-over-year uptick in consumption of sports highlights. Sports related content overall was up 60%. (link); Finally some good news for Snapchat as user growth & revenue were both up last quarter. (link)
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Looks like TCU AD Donati & the Horned Frogs are launching a Facebook Live interview series designed to give supporters a direct route to ask the new boss questions about the department. The first engagement is scheduled for tomorrow evening. (link); More on Donati's close connection to former TCU AD & new Texas leader Del Conte. Interestingly, Donati's legal skill set helped Del Conte negotiate his first contact in Fort Worth before finally joining the department in 2011. Donati: "I’ll rely on his advice because he sat in that chair for nine years. But he and I are very competitive with each other and that’s not going to go anywhere. Now that he’s at Texas and I’m at TCU, we’ll take that to another level; but we’ll always have a love and bond that goes beyond an employer-employee type of relationship." (link)
On Monday, Ole Miss filed its written appeal with the NCAA and now will wait the requisite 30 days for a response from the Committee on Infractions. Up for debate is the multi-year bowl ban, the lack of institutional control charge and recruiting restrictions the COI levied against the Rebels back in December. AD Bjork indicated a public release of the appeal by early next week. (link)
Inside Carolina's Hayes wonders if North Carolina MBB will ever play a game in the old Carmichael Arena, just for old times sake. AD Cunningham: "Part of that is a financial question. We have all of the games in the Smith Center, and we build our budget based on games in the Smith Center. While it's a great idea and concept, there is a financial implication to moving a game out of the Smith Center and putting it in Carmichael." The 6,822-seat venue was renovated in 2010 and serves as home to the WBB team, but the MBB squad hasn't played there since 2010 when the Tar Heels hosted the first round of the NIT. The Smith Center holds 21,750 and UNC MBB ticket revenue last season was $11.4M, nearly 12% of the overall athletic department's budget. Cunningham: "Playing back in Carmichael is a great thing for Carolina, but there is an economic reality to the good idea. If we had the right combination of home games and revenue associated, and we could forego a game in the Smith Center, we'd have to consider it." (link)
More Facilities: Central Michigan brass roll out initial renderings of the coming Chippewa Champions Center as Populous is handling the work. Chips AD Alford: "We're in the early stages of fund-raising, and there is strong interest in this project. By working with architects, we can take goals and ideas, build a vision and see what excites our alumni and supporters. It's an exciting project, and it shows the power of working with campus partners." (link); South Carolina FB HC Muschamp commits to a "leadership gift" for the soon-to-be-built FB Operations Center. (link); LSU will construct a new on-campus Beach Volleyball venue by September of this year. (link); McNeese State's Cowboy Stadium is getting new turf & the department will have use of a new charter bus thanks to a $935K gift from alum & businessman Noland. (link)
In just the second year of the revamped Wildcat Club at Abilene Christian, annual giving is up 210%, reaching almost $1M in FY17. Membership also grew (703 to 981) and overall fundraising efforts went from $6.25M to $6.77M, which includes at 156% uptick in unrestricted gifts and a 247% increase in restricted gifts to individual sport excellence funds. AD De Leon: "I'm blown away by the generosity of our Wildcat Club members over the course of the last year. They have really stepped up to the plate to support our 400 student-athletes in an unprecedented way. I'm thankful for the leadership and hard work of (deputy director of athletics) Dave Kinard and his external operations staff in spearheading our fundraising efforts." (link)
Also Noticed: From Law360: "The judge overseeing concussion litigation against the NCAA in Illinois federal court again delayed final approval of a $75 million settlement after learning Tuesday — for the second time — that thousands of current and former student-athletes have yet to be notified of the deal... " (link); Looks like Big South Commish Kallander announces the league's MBB framework will switch to North/South Divisions and play 16 games. (link); The James Madison MBB squad has been hit with a case of mumps and consequently Thursday's scheduled game against UNC Wilmington and Saturday's contest with Elon have been postponed. (link); Central Arkansas announces a five-year partnership with Nike through BSN SPORTS. Financial details not disclosed. (link); Nebraska sold nearly 60K FB Spring Game tix on the first day. (link); Here's a list of broadcast details for all SEC Spring FB games. (link); All NFL Combine participants can now be found on the NFL's website. (link); Thought of the Day from Sports Illustrated's Staples on the ever-rising salaries for FB HCs, "But the Gene Smith comments do bring up another interesting question. At what point will an AD look at what his coach has done (not talking about Meyer, but someone much more average) and say 'Your Wins Above Replacement don't justify your salary demands?'" (link)
Stanford Science Director Seppala and Yale Consultant Moeller estimate that "1 in 5 Highly Engaged Employees Is at Risk of Burnout" in this HBR read. Maintaining engagement for employees has long been an HR sticking point, but Seppala and Moeller warn against the "engaged-exhausted" feeling and suggest the following approach: employers need to offer high resources and low demands. "Managers and HR leaders can help employees by dialing down the demands they’re placing on people — ensuring that employee goals are realistic and rebalancing the workloads of employees who, by virtue of being particularly skilled or productive, have been saddled with too much. They can also try to increase the resources available to employees; this includes not only material resources such as time and money, but intangible resources such as empathy and friendship in the workplace, and letting employees disengage from work when they’re not working. By avoiding emailing people after hours, setting a norm that evenings and weekends are work-free, and encouraging a regular lunch break in the middle of the day, leaders can make sure they’re sending a consistent message that balance matters." (link)
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(Posted from most recent over the last 30 days)

(NEW!) Senior Manager, Digital Media and Analytics (Paciolan / Irvine, CA): This is a senior marketing position that specializes in digital advertising, search marketing and analytics, advising and evaluating client marketing performance and reviewing digital properties. More details HERE.

(NEW!) Director of Ticket Operations (College Football Playoff / Irving, TX): The Director of Ticket Operations manages ticketing for the National Championship and all auxiliary events that take place in conjunction with the game. More details HERE.

(NEW!) Digital Marketing and Sales Coordinator (College Football Playoff / Irving, TX): The Digital Marketing and Sales Coordinator provides coordination and project management services with focus on promoting the brand and maximizing revenue. More details HERE.

Associate Director of Athletics for Facilities, Operations & Events (College of the Holy Cross / Worcester, MA): This position will provide leadership for the facilities, operations & events staff on a day-to-day basis in addition to oversight of athletics facilities, game operations and outside events. More details HERE.

Director of Athletics (Bucknell University / Lewisburg, PA): Bucknell University is a NCAA Division I school with outstanding academic and athletics tradition. Witt/Kieffer has been retained by Bucknell to lead the recruitment for its next Director of Athletics. More details HERE.

Assistant AD\Major Gifts or Director of Major Gifts (Temple University / Philadelphia, PA): The Assistant AD\Major Gifts or Director of Major Gifts will devise strategies and be responsible for the cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship of gifts up to $25,000 on an annual basis. More details HERE.

Assistant/Associate Director, Varsity O Association (University of Oklahoma - Norman / Norman, OK): Varsity O Association Asst/Assoc Dir will be responsible for advancing the mission of OU Athletics thru its extensive network of letter winners by providing opportunities to engage with the dept. More details HERE.

Assistant Director of Accounting - Athletics (Georgia Institute of Technology / Atlanta, GA): Responsible for receipt and timely recording of revenue related items, including ticketing & donor related income, while also assisting in daily operations by performing advanced financial functions. More details HERE.

Deputy Athletic Director (University of Delaware / Newark, DE): Act as the Chief Operating Officer and oversee the Intercollegiate and Recreation Services ongoing internal operations, maximize resumes & be responsible for the internal efficiency of the dep't. More details HERE.

Associate Athletic Director for Annual Giving (San Jose State University / San Jose, CA): The Aspen Leadership Group is proud to partner with San José State University in the search for an Associate Athletic Director for Annual Giving. More details HERE.

Head Volleyball Coach and Associate in Physical Education (Columbia University / New York, NY): The Head Volleyball Coach is responsible for organizing and administering all aspects of the volleyball program. Quicklink: More details HERE.

Associate AD for Marketing and Strategic Communications (Samford University / Birmingham, AL): The Associate AD for Marketing & Strategic Communications will provide leadership and oversight for the areas of marketing, communications, and fan engagement. More details HERE.

Asst. Director of Marketing & Fan Experience (University of Oklahoma - Norman / Norman, OK): Asst. Director of Marketing & Fan Experience will advance the mission and values of OU Athletics by coordinating ticket sales efforts, directing advertising campaigns and executing game entertainment. More details HERE.

Senior Associate or Associate Athletics Director for External Affairs (University of California, Riverside / Riverside, CA): Liaison between the Athletics Director and all Athletics fundraising activities and revenue operations. Emphasis on enhancing UCR’s Division I relevancy, revenue generation and new market outreach. More details HERE.

Director of Clinical Counseling Services for Student-Athletes (Mississippi State University / Starkville, MS): Provision of general psychological services (evaluation, treatment and education) to student athletes. More details HERE.

Executive Director of Development/Assistant AD for Development (George Washington University / Washington D.C.): GW seeks a dynamic & strategic leader to join a high performing fund raising team as Exec. Director of Development. Will manage team and direct their development efforts to ensure fundraising success. More details HERE.

Director of Digital Media Services (Mid-American Conference / Cleveland, OH): Create video content that drives fan engagement and views of website and social media platforms. Serve as liaison for ESPN3 campus productions. Direct media relations activities for select sports. More details HERE.

Compliance Coordinator (Oral Roberts University / Tulsa, OK): The Compliance Coordinator will assist in the development and implementation of a comprehensive program to ensure compliance with University, Summit League and NCAA rules and regulations. More details HERE.

Athletics Assistant Director for Business Operations (University of Nevada, Las Vegas / Las Vegas, NV): The University of Nevada, Las Vegas invites applications for Athletics Assistant Director for Business Operations, Intercollegiate Athletics. More details HERE.

Assistant Director for Financial Reporting (University of Nevada, Las Vegas / Las Vegas, NV): The University of Nevada, Las Vegas invites applications for Assistant Director for Financial Reporting, Intercollegiate Athletics [R0107169]. More details HERE.

Assistant Athletics Director for Sports Performance (CSUN / Northridge, CA): Responsibilities: Management and supervision of the Sports Performance staff, weight training facility, including development of policies and procedures for risk management, appropriate supervision. More details HERE.

Facilities & Operations Coordinator (Oregon State University / Corvallis, OR): Reporting to the Associate AD, Facilities & Event Management, the Facility & Operations Coordinator will assist the Associate AD with the coordination of assigned home athletic contests. More details HERE.

Athletics Marketing & Promotions Graduate Assistantship (Ball State University / Muncie, IN): Execute in-game promotions for football, mens/womens basketball, women’s volleyball, baseball & softball. May include the role of mascot coordinator, supervision of 6-10 sports mktg student staff. More details HERE.

Assistant Director of Multimedia (Conference USA / Irving, TX): Serve as primary strategist for the C-USA social media initiatives, as well as lead development of the visual style and communication of C-USA online outlets. More details HERE.

Assistant/Associate Commissioner for New Media and Technology (Missouri Valley Conference / St. Louis, MO): Management of creative/digital content; contributions to Conference marketing and promotional initiatives; oversight of the league website/social media/graphic design and producing video content. More details HERE.

Assistant Director of Athletics, Communications (University of Richmond / Richmond, VA): The Assistant Director of Athletics/Communications oversees all public relations and media relations activities and budgets, including supervision of full-time, part-time, student, and game day staff. More details HERE.
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