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(Read) What Can College Athletics Communications Pros Learn From The Olympics?
MBB-FBI: Yahoo's Thamel gets more quotes from those close to the on-going hoops saga. Here's one: "This goes a lot deeper in college basketball than four corrupt assistant coaches. When this all comes out, Hall of Fame coaches should be scared, lottery picks won’t be eligible to play and almost half of the 16 teams the NCAA showed on its initial NCAA tournament show this weekend should worry about their appearance being vacated." Thamel says up to 50s program could eventually be implicated. When might we learn the details? Columbia law professor & former Southern District of New York federal prosecutor Richman: "The main sources of release will be in the course of pretrial motions and trial, and/or as related investigations go overt." (link); More Thamel via Twitter: "We have dates for all three of the criminal court cases in the basketball scandal. October 1 for Gatto/Dawkins/Code. Feb. 4 2019 for Person and Michel. And the final case -- with includes Book/Evans/Bland -- is April 22 of 2019. Long way to go." (link); ; U.S. District Court Judge Kaplan "emphatically disagreed" to dismisses the cases of former Adidas employees Gatto & Code, as well as that for sports agent Dawkins. (link); Sports Illustrated legal expert McCann, "The exposure of top figures in college basketball to the FBI corruption case follows a foreseeable pattern: charge the assistant coaches with crimes, apply pressure and eventually get them to point fingers at those above them--the big fish." (link)
Outgoing Michigan State AD Hollis in an all-office email, "As I stated in my retirement announcement, my commitment to cooperate and be transparent with all investigations is in place and it always has been. In doing this, I can state with certainty that there were inaccurate, incomplete and misleading statements made and then reported by ESPN. Nancy and I made the decision to retire. While we love serving Spartans and will miss all of you on a daily basis, we have confidence in you and your ability to continue to strive for the highest values." More. (link); ESPN's Lavigne reports freshman MSU MBB student-athlete Washington has been under investigation since the beginning of the Fall semester for alleged criminal sexual misconduct. (link)
USA Today's Berkowitz updates on developments within the O'Bannon case as attorneys were back in court yesterday to debate the NCAA's appeal of the $42.3M previously award to the plaintiff lawyers. Of note from Berkowitz: "Lawyer for O'Bannon side in fees/costs argument before 9th Circuit says 265 colleges have moved to awarding cost-of-attendance-based scholarships since the case was decided. […] Notable takeaway from 9th Circuit hearing on O'Bannon fees/costs award: 9th Circuit Judge Bybee's rhetorical question in which he said that in the pending Alston/Jenkins litigation (if it goes to trial), the NCAA won't be able to argue that antitrust law doesn't apply to NCAA." More. (link - scroll down)
USC AD Swann sits down with the university's Daily Breeze, says the Freeh Group found improprieties connected to the MBB program to be a "one-off" issue & not institutional neglect. Swann also indicates the Freeh Group's work has been done for a while & walks through the decision to have MBB student-athlete Melton sit for the entire season. How can the MBB landscape get cleaned up? "It’s the proliferation of all these amateur sports clubs and teams that seem to have an impact on potential student-athletes and where they go to school and the people involved with them at that level. If there’s a way to clean that up, if there’s a way to create a better system moving forward, I’d be very much in favor of that. What that is? We’ll look to see." On the Pac-12's TV situation, Swann indicates it's not something he dwells on as it's not getting fixed anytime soon. (link)
Nebraska AD Moos gets asked some of the same questions as Swann, albeit by a different news outlet, "I think the debate over amateurism versus professionalism. Are these young people in it for the money? Are they in it for the education? Are they into it for the experience? These are questions that are being asked these days, and college athletics is big business. Budgets that are on an annual basis, all the way up to 150, close to $200 million a year. Huge stadiums and arenas, very lucrative television deals, shoe and apparel contracts, all of the sponsorships that are out there today. It really is truly a big business, and I've seen it grow over my 25 years as a major college athletic director, in leaps and bounds, and makes one wonder where it's going to go from here." Moos notes the reality of the continuing arms race for facility enhancements, calls the developments in East Lansing "tragic," believes education is crucial to ensure nothing similar happens in Lincoln, in closing, "I hope that my time here at Nebraska, and I hope it's a long time, will be one that we were extremely competitive. That we provided wonderful opportunities for many, many young people." Lots more. (link)
Ole Miss submitted its appeal to the NCAA connected to the Committee on Infractions handing Rebels FB another post-season ban, plus other penalties. "This Committee should vacate and reverse the penalties and factual findings because the COI abused its discretion, departed from precedent, committed procedural errors, and reached factual conclusions inconsistent with the evidence." Within the appeal, "At what point does an institution get a clean slate in the infractions process? For this COI panel the answer appears to be 'never.' […] This clear error of judgment renders the imposition of a second postseason ban arbitrary, capricious, or irrational." (link); Here's the full filing. (link)
Inside Higher Ed's Seltzer takes a look at dynamics around the tenures of Presidents & Chancellors, asks if "70 is the new 50?" Points to a number of leadership situations where administrators in their 60s & 70s have secured notable top spots at high-profile institutions like Harvard, Cal, West Virginia & Richmond over the past couple of years. Considerations: "A preference for experienced presidents has real ramifications on diversity at the position. Older generations tended to offer fewer women and minority candidates opportunities to rise through leadership positions. As a result, colleges and universities drawn to older presidents today are hewing more closely to the model of hiring aging white men than they might otherwise. […] Sometimes, those on search committees fear older candidates are looking for a soft landing before retirement. But it’s a sensitive subject, because search committees and boards of trustees try to stay as far away as possible from the possibility of being charged with age discrimination." Are there similarities to the AD path these days? More. (link)
Korn Ferry CEO Burnison with a short video to hype his new book, "Lose The Resume, Land The Job." Burnison covers the importance of his ACT framework in how candidates approach an interview: 1) Be Authentic; 2) Connect; and, 3) Give them a Taste of who you are, not what you've done. Burnison: "You want to go into this as a conversation. You want to make a connection to the other person you're talking to. That's absolutely the key, make it conversational." (link)
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The Pac-12 Networks is taking its hoops studio show on the road to Las Vegas for MBB's post-season tourney. Pac-12 Hotline's Wilner: "Kudos to Mark Shuken, the new Pac12Nets president, for recognizing the need to move the shows to Vegas. The change lends legitimacy to the networks, makes for a better overall product and sends a message that men’s basketball is a priority. That hasn’t always been clear in the past, with either of the major sports." (link)
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North Carolina's FY17 results: Total operating expenses of $96.5M & basically the same in revenues (there was a $10,803 overall surplus). Scholarship costs of $15.6M & student fees of $6.97M were two other notable numbers. Tar Heels AD Cunningham: "The costs are very concerning as we go forward. Our scholarship costs have risen significantly in the last couple of years with the cost of attendance. We used to get an out-of-state tuition waiver for student-athletes. We don't get that anymore. …The challenge for us is that we have many more teams than most of our peers, more student-athletes. So, many of those costs are somewhat exacerbated for us." Senior Assoc. AD & CFO Ballen: "We feel that strain every year. We've been feeling some of that pressure for a while now. … It's never where we can breathe a sigh of relief. Because when we think we might have a little cushion, there are more things that we have to do on the expense side." (link)
New Texas boss Del Conte points to major investments into Darrell K. Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium to enhance the fan experience. In part, "You have to WiFi these old iron mares. These old stadiums are built in the 30s, they're huge with 100,000 seats and are old-school stadiums. When you walk in, (stadiums) don't have all of the modern amenities. We're spending a lot of money to retro-fit WiFi, cell towers, all of those things so everyone has connectivity, because that's what (fans) want today." (link)
Miami (FL) gets a $100K donation toward the Carol Soffer Indoor Practice Facility from former Canes' FB student-athlete Olsen, which brings the total amount raised from 80 former FB players to $2M. Accordingly, one of the position coach's offices in the 81,800-square-foot facility will be named "The Greg & Kara Olsen Assistant Football Coach's Office." Olsen: "Our goal is to contribute in making Miami a consistent force on a national level. We hope these facilities aid in our ability to attract top-tier talent to the University and win championships." (link)
The Athletic's Vannini takes a look at the recent FB HC carousel, notes 21 overall changes is a bit less than the average of 23.3 over the past 10 years. Only two 'Group of 5' HCs moved up to the 'Power 5' level, eight schools hired coordinators, four went with HCs who were out of coaching & three selected internal candidates. One such AD was Georgia Southern's Kleinlein, "As ADs, when you look at the landscape of potential coaches, the head coach, more important than ever, has to have the pulse of a lot of different things. We talk a lot about the CEO, that kind of guy. It’s really hard to find somebody outside that can come in and grab the pulse right away." (link)
Arkansas Tech (DII) Assoc. AD for Communications Smith decided to survey his peers who are leaving the athletic communications field to figure out "why" there has been a notable exodus. Work-life balance and lack of competitive compensation were the lead reasons for employees wanting to look elsewhere and ultimately choose a new position. Many did not feel equipped to handle all of the responsibilities, such as game management roles that were tacked on during events, while others had scheduling/staffing concerns. Number one thing that could have kept them around? Salary bump, followed by adding staff. Lots more in the survey questions. (link)
More Personnel: Fairfield's Schlickmann is the latest to be added to the DI Council. (link); New Mexico FB HC Davie will serve a 30-day unpaid suspension starting tomorrow & running through March 18. (link); No selection of a search firm yet at Louisville, but Interim Prez Postel still plans to hire a permanent AD by the end of March. (link); Highly-accomplished UC Irvine Baseball HC Gillespie says this will be his last season. Anteaters AC Orloff will take over the program. (link); Penn AD Calhoun tabs longtime Men's Soccer HC Fuller as her new Senior Assoc. AD for Intercollegiate Programs. (link); Texas AD Del Conte will hire a new Track & Field HC. (link); Southern Utah AD Corum selects UTSA AHC Hoyer as SUU's new Women's Volleyball HC. (link); Creighton boss Rasmussen selects local high school HC Gannon as the new Cross Country HC in Omaha. (link)
The Connected Fan sponsored by From Now On
Penn Live's Jones believe the downturn in student attendance at FB games is a direct result of smartphone advances coupled with rising prices. Jones: "But it's pretty clear from looking at student sections across the country that they are the ones most responsible for the national downturn and this is scaring the crap out of the suits who run college athletics. Because the administrators know if students don't attend the games now, they'll be less likely to donate later when they're at prime earning age. But I'm not sure there's anything middle-aged marketers can do about it at this point. They grew up in an era when attention, at least outside the home, was necessarily devoted to flesh-and-blood reality and not screens." (link); Amazon is reportedly still in the mix for a smaller, but top tier EPL rights package. (link); The NFL's Thursday Night streaming package auction still includes Twitter, Amazon, YouTube & Verizon. (link); CBS is rolling out its new OTT product in time for March Madness & The Masters. (link)
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Arizona State Prez Crow had his turn on the Doug & Wolf Show yesterday and he took the opportunity to share his thoughts on how the College Football Playoff should be changed: "I think it should be conference champions playing conference champions, period. We should never have a national championship which has two teams from the same conference. It doesn’t actually pick up on what is actually the competitive position. How does anyone actually know that the Pac-12 Champion is worse than anyone else?" Also, says mega coaching contracts are "not good for college athletics" and indicates he and his league peers "talk about having enough resources for all of our sports to be supported. We're not going down the path of other conferences." Says he put his trust in AD Anderson on the recent FB hire of HC Edwards. (link)
New Wyoming Senior Assoc. AD for Administration/SWA Jude chats with 1.Question on her transition from serving as AD at Queens (NY) (DII) to Laramie & the framework she's using to wrap her head & hands around the culture for the Pokes. Jude, who had been on the job for literally five days when the interview took place, pointed to reading as many manuals & historical documents as possible around the office & asking a boatload of questions. Lots here. (link)
Montana State inks a new deal with Under Armour to outfit all Bobcats programs that also increases the overall product allotment by 2.5x. It's a five-year guaranteed agreement with options in 2023-24 & 2024-25. (link); Alabama State also did a five-year pact with Adidas. Interim AD Williams: "Adidas is one of the world’s most recognizable companies in the industry. The brand speaks for itself and is respected worldwide." (link)
Cal State Bakersfield gets a commitment from Kern Schools Federal Credit Union that will allow the Roadrunners to revamp locker rooms & team spaces, as well as acquire a new playing court in the Icardo Center. AD Siegfried promises to keep the notable blue court, the only one of its kind in the nation, in a permanent setup that will no longer require the court to get reassembled before each game. KSFCU will get its logo on the new surface. (link)
More Legal Matters: Two Baylor FB student-athletes are involved in allegations of sexual assault brought by Equestrian student-athletes. (link); Minnesota MBB student-athlete Lynch drops his sexual assault case appeal, officially expelled from the university. Lynch: "I did not commit any of the acts I’m accused of. In today’s climate, people automatically assume you’re guilty. … I am angry there’s no real way to defend myself. [...] I have become a victim of false allegations." (link); The wording of his signed LOI & financial-aid agreement have played a big role in former Duke Men's Soccer student-athlete McKenna's appeal of a six-semester suspension stemming from claims of sexual misconduct. McKenna's breach of conduct suit against the university continues to be upheld in court, meaning the two parties may look to negotiate a settlement. (link)
Also Noticed: The FDA has approved a blood test that can detect concussions & brain injuries. The FDA's Rabin says the Banyan Brain Trauma Indicator "is going to change the testing paradigm for suspected cases of concussion." (link); Here's a new salary database at Iowa. (link); Florida State is moving to a model flex-pass mobile-only FB season ticket option for recent graduates. Packages: 5, 10 or 20 passes. (link); Oklahoma State will serve beer at Baseball & Softball games starting this season. (link); Clemson drops concession prices at Baseball games. Bottled water, popcorn & hot dogs all reduced by $2 a piece. The Tigers open today against William & Mary. (link); Miami (FL) FB student-athlete Shirreffs cleared to transfer to top MBA schools within the ACC (Duke, North Carolina or Virginia). (link); North Dakota State completed its $800K upgrade to Bison Softball digs that includes a new scoreboard, chair back seating, sound system, press box & more. (link); Auburn has an interesting new Spanish-language podcast series. (link); An Arizona cheerleader got ejected from last night's MBB matchup at Arizona State. Here's the video. (link); Kentucky & Akron do a three-game FB deal in '21 & '24 in Lexington & '23 on the Zips' home field. (link); Marshall & ECU link up for FB match-ups in '23 (Greenville) & '25 (Huntington). (link)
The Connected Fan sponsored by From Now On
The Norwegian men's ski team is once again racking up the medals at the Winter Olympics, and the New York Times' Pennington takes a look at the reasons behind the team's success historically.  The group abides by five rules: 1. Don't be a jerk; 2. No class structure among the group; 3. "The social fabric of the group is paramount"; 4. Talk to, not about, each other; and 5. Friday night is taco night. The members of the group have also been known to share beds when hotel accommodations are meager. (link)
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(Posted from most recent over the last 30 days)

(NEW!) Associate Athletics Director for Facility and Event Operations (Pennsylvania State University / University Park, PA): Penn State University Intercollegiate Athletics is seeking an Associate Athletics Director for Facility and Event Operations. Please view full job description at More details HERE.

Senior Account Executive for Georgetown Sports Properties (Georgetown Sports Properties / Washington, DC): The Sr. Account Executive will develop, sell, and manage all aspects of fully integrated corporate sponsorship packages for Georgetown Sports Properties. More details HERE.

Executive Director - Athletics Foundation (Georgia Southern University / Statesboro, GA): Georgia Southern University is accepting applications for the Executive Director-Athletic Foundation. EEO/AA/ADA/Veteran employer. More details HERE.

Assoc Director of Development and Internal Operations (University of Georgia Athletic Association / Athens, GA): Will support annual giving functions of The Georgia Bulldog Club;maintain a portfolio of major gift donors & prospects;Provide oversight of all TGBC gift & data entry; cultivate & steward donors. More details HERE.

Senior Associate Athletic Director for Academic Services (University of North Texas / Denton, TX): Overseeing Student Services Center; includes academic support, staff, student services, & student-athlete development. Providing leadership executed through policies & processes for student athletes. More details HERE.

Director, Ticket Operations (Stanford University / Stanford, CA): The Director, Ticket Operations manages ticketing for 100+ regular season events, major tournaments and postseason events across many of Stanford’s 36 Division I varsity sports. More details HERE.

Assistant Coach, Men's Soccer (University of North Carolina Wilmington / Wilmington, NC): Assists the Head Coach in providing leadership for a NCAA Division I men’s soccer program. Assists with all aspects of the men’s soccer program. More details HERE.

Assistant Director of Athletics Communications (James Madison University / Harrisonburg, VA): Serve as communications contact for softball, volleyball, swimming and diving and in support of football with an emphasis on digital content & engagement. More details HERE.

Director of Intercollegiate Athletics (University of California, Berkeley / Berkeley, CA): The University of California, Berkeley invites applications for the position of Director of Intercollegiate Athletics. Witt/Kieffer has been retained by the University to lead the search. More details HERE.

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.

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.

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.

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.
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