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October 2020
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College AD News

Wed, Sep 23, 2020


Dr. Brandon Martin UMKC Vice Chancellor Athletics Director (courtesy

Kansas City AD, Dr. Brandon Martin, Talks to CollegeAD About his New Vice Chancellor Role on Campus

“The role is a promotion to Vice Chancellor and I am maintaining my Director of Athletics duties. This role is unique because it is in alignment with academic affairs, student affairs practitioners, and student leaders on campus. It’s all designed to create innovative campus strategic initiatives related to retention and graduation for underrepresented students, first-generation, transfer students, and students of color.” - Dr. Brandon Martin, Vice Chancellor / Director of Athletics, Kansas City

Dr. Brandon Martin will be wearing multiple hats on Kansas City’s campus. Now in the role of Vice Chancellor, as well as Director of Athletics, Martin will pair his athletics department leadership with additional work on campus and strategic initiatives.

“I’m going to be leading a minority student leadership task force that launched from our Roos Advocate for Change Initiative. Essentially, I will meet with minority student leaders and discuss things that related to campus climate, how to increase funding for scholarships, how to improve facilities for students of color, and ethnic and gender programming on campus.”

Martin will co-lead the retention and graduation task force with Senior Vice Provost for Student Success Kristi Holsinger, an effort launched this fall by Chancellor C. Mauli Agrawal and Provost Jenny Lundgren.

“The chancellor selected me as one of the primary leaders for the UMKC Forward Initiative that provided me the opportunity to collaborate with many cross-campus leaders on campus. I felt truly entrenched in the fabric of campus mission and strategic priorities. It’s such a unique opportunity, not only to be the Athletic Director on campus but also an administrator in academic affairs and to have a closer relationship with the chancellor and provost. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to play multiple positions at the university.”

Serving as a committee chair as part of UMKC Forward this past summer, Martin helped in identifying university-wide opportunities for innovation, growth, and investment that will generate revenue through auxiliary and external services to advance the mission of UMKC. The committee was part of a campus-wide collaborative process designed to work toward greater institutional efficiency and excellence.

Now, as part of the task force leadership, Martin will partner with student affairs and academic leaders and in assessment, evaluation, and retention initiatives and opportunities to enhance student engagement and success. He will also work collaboratively with academic leadership and enrollment operations to lead enhanced integration of student services into the greater campus community and serve as a student advocate to resolve matters of academic hardship and college process navigation.

“It’s more responsibility, but I’m vested in our process. I’m committed to this campus and I believe in the transformative work that is ahead. It’s a weighty, but needed effort and I’m convinced I’m the right man for the job. There are so many students who are going to be empowered, inspired, and motivated to excel UMKC. Our efforts will ultimately make UMKC an even better and impressive university and elevate Kansas City at large.”

and now on to the day’s news…

The Day’s News

  • Doug Elgin, the commissioner of the Missouri Valley Conference for the past 33 years, announced today that he will be stepping down from the position following the 2020-21 academic year.
  • A national search will be conducted, with Atlanta-based Parker Executive Search handling the recruitment of candidates and the coordination of the hiring process.

Ohio State to Cut Jobs and Wages to Offset $107M Deficit

  • Ohio State athletics will implement layoffs, furloughs and other cost-saving measures to offset a projected $107 million deficit due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the department announced this morning. However, Ohio State said it will not cut any of its sports programs, maintaining its status as the largest athletic department in the nation.
  • It also will keep intact all scholarship funding and other support services and resources in a $180 million budget, per a news release.
  • Permanent job cuts will eliminate 25 full-time athletics positions. Those positions were not specified in a news release.
  • Ohio State said it currently includes a conservative estimate of $73 million in revenue for the current fiscal year
  • In a meeting of the conference’s CEO group Thursday, the Pac-12’s presidents and chancellors could (finally) vote to play a football season this fall.
  • A release last week stated that “we plan to reconvene this coming Thursday, September 24 to make a decision regarding possible return to play prior to January 1. The health and safety of our student-athletes and all those connected to Pac-12 sports will continue to be our number one priority in all of our decision making.”
  • The Bay Area News Group’s Jon Wilner reported Wednesday that the Pac-12 has the votes to play, but it’s unclear whether the CEO group will decide to stagger its season-openers between Oct. 31 and Nov. 7 — to allow programs with the appropriate public health permissions who are physically prepared to play, to do so — or opt for a uniform start Nov. 7.
  • Nebraska is set to host a college basketball bubble with several power five teams involved, according to a CBS report.
  • According to CBSSports’ Jon Rothstein, Nebraska will not participate in the Myrtle Beach Invitational bubble in Orlando, and will instead host its own bubble the first week of the season.
  • The NCAA basketball season is slated to begin Nov. 25. “Several power conference teams are expected to be included,” according to Rothstein’s tweet.

Wisconsin Facing $70 Million Shortfall Even With Football

  • The Badgers are facing a revenue drop of between $60 million and $70 million in a 2020-21 fiscal year racked by the COVID-19 pandemic, associate athletic director and chief financial officer Adam Barnes said Wednesday.
  • The department had previously cautioned that a revenue shortfall of $100 million or more was possible this year without a football season.
  • The department has frozen hiring on open positions, limited spending to essential purchases and instituted salary cuts through furloughs and a work-share program.
  • Northern Illinois president Lisa Freeman on Wednesday confirmed a meeting of Mid-American Conference presidents scheduled for Friday.
  • “There is a MAC meeting of MAC chancellors and presidents on Friday, and that’s about all I can say,” Freeman said.
  • The meeting, reported to discuss a six-game schedule for football in the fall, comes a week after the NIU team, along with the Huskies men’s golf and men’s basketball programs, were placed into quarantine.
  • The Iowa Board of Regents will review the 2021 athletic budgets for three of Iowa’s Universities in a meeting Wednesday.
  • The University of Iowa, Iowa State and the University of Northern Iowa have had their budgets hit by the coronavirus pandemic.
  • The board approved other university departmental budgets in July, but they deferred the athletic department budgets until September.

Texas State Coach Danny Kaspar Resigns After Investigation into Comments

  • Texas State coach Danny Kaspar resigned on Tuesday night following a several-month investigation into his conduct within the program, according to KVUE. Kaspar was accused of making racist and disturbing comments to his players repeatedly throughout his tenure with the Bobcats, and has been under investigation since June.
  • Texas State first started investigating Kaspar in June, days after former point guard Jaylen Shead made disturbing allegations against him. Shead, who played under Kaspar for two seasons, accused him of consistently making racist and abusive statements to both him and his teammates. That was largely why he decided to transfer out.
  • Kaspar, 65, has been at Texas State since 2013 and has compiled a 119-109 overall record there. He joined the Bobcats after a 13-year stint at Stephen F. Austin.
  • The Division I Committee on Academics recommended that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Division I Board of Directors pause the penalties associated with the Academic Performance Program.
  • The recommendation would impact the spring 2021 public release of the data collected this fall. Schools also would not be subject to a loss of postseason competition due to low Academic Progress Rates.
  • The pause also would allow Division I members to focus on other critical issues facing college sports, including financial sustainability in a year when the industry has been decimated by postponements and cancellations of sports seasons.
  • In a series of tweets, The Athletic’s Justin Williams reported multiple quotes from American Athletic Conference Commissioner Mike Aresco talking about the success of the system for cancelling and postponing games, how the conference championship will work amidst so many cancellations, and more.
  • “We anticipated losing some games, we anticipated disruption,” Aresco said. “But what it really suggests is that the system is working because we are very prudent in terms of whether we play or not.”
  • Talking about why the AAC decided against instituting postponement thresholds in regard to number or percentage of positive COVID-19 tests or players held out for related reasons, Aresco said, “We didn’t want to tie our hands. We know there are nuances that go with this.”

South Florida Postpones Game Due to Playing Notre Dame Last Week

  • One day after it was announced that Notre Dame’s game against Wake Forest slated for Saturday was postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak involving the Irish, we have some more bad news.
  • The team Notre Dame blew out by the score of 52-0 last week, South Florida, has just postponed its game against Florida Atlantic slated for this coming Saturday.
  • It can’t be a coincidence that the Bulls had to postpone their game mere days after taking on Notre Dame in South Bend. As noted in the report, it is because of a COVID-19 outbreak within the South Florida football program.
  • The scheduled Sept. 26 matchup between Houston and North Texas has been canceled, both schools announced Wednesday.
  • “We understand this COVID-related decision North Texas has made to not play Saturday’s game and appreciate the consistent dialogue with our program by UNT Athletics Director Wren Baker, his administration and medical staff during this week,” UH Vice President for Athletics Chris Pezman said.
  • The Southeastern Conference has selected PAE to provide COVID-19 testing services for in-season fall sports at each of the 14 SEC campuses.
  • The Conference and PAE have been working together since mid-August to implement testing protocols for fall sports.
  • Teaming with Premier Medical Group, PAE deployed test teams to each campus earlier this month to begin testing and all related logistics for SEC sports, Commissioner Greg Sankey said on Wednesday.
  • The Arkansas State Athletics Department announced Wednesday that it has postponed its Sept. 26 home football game against Tulsa due to being unable to assemble a two-deep depth chart at one position group that would allow the game to be played safely.
  • Arkansas State and Tulsa officials are mutually working together to find a new date to reschedule the game, and the A-State Athletics Department will provide an update when available.
  • The football team will continue its practice schedule this week since it wasn’t the volume of total players unavailable, but rather the inability to field a safe number of players among the depleted position group that required the game be rescheduled.
  • Tulsa’s interim athletic director Rick Dickson said he plans to be in the role for nine to 12 months.
  • He also said he is not interested in becoming the permanent AD again. Dickson was the school’s athletic director from 1990-1994.
  • SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey went on Birmingham’s The Roundtable on Wednesday morning and had plenty to say regarding a player transferring from one school to another within the SEC.
  • “There is a very direct rule that says if you transfer from School A to School B in the SEC, you serve an academic year-of-residence (before said player is eligible to play),” Sankey said.
  • “There are a set of NCAA oddity exceptions. Then in 2018 our membership created two more, one for grad transfers, and one for individuals on teams that face postseason bans. And people send in waivers, but one of the questions that should be asked is not what is the commissioner going to do. It’s why haven’t our members voted to change that rule?”
  • It’s been almost two years since the official groundbreaking ceremony and Protective Stadium is embedding itself within the Birmingham skyline at a breakneck pace.
  • Birmingham-based construction firm Brasfield & Gorrie was awarded a $179 million bid in December and the stadium is finally taking shape. The press box and lighting steel are in place and the concrete seating tracks extending out of the bowl have been poured.

Yale Athletics Gets 100 Percent Voter Registration

  • Yesterday was National Voter Registration Day and Yale Athletics celebrated by successfully capping its fall campaign to have each student-athlete and coach registered by the nonpartisan civic holiday.
  • Getting all 35 teams, which includes 739 people, to register was the initiative of the Yale Bulldogs for Change (YBC), a leadership team aimed to enhance the varsity student-athlete experience for people of color.
  • To spread awareness of the campaign, YBC partnered with Yale’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) representatives, who worked with their teams and coaches to collect the registrations and confirmations from their teammates.
  • A request for referral of the infractions case involving LSU to the Independent Accountability Resolution Process was granted by the Infractions Referral Committee.
  • Consistent with rules and procedures governing the process, details about the matter will remain confidential until the Independent Resolution Panel releases its decision.
  • Gulliver Scott has been named head coach of the University of Portland women’s rowing team, Portland Vice President for Athletics Scott Leykam announced on Tuesday.
  • Scott, who most recently served as Associate Head Coach at Saint Mary’s, becomes the third head coach in program history.
  • To provide Pirate Nation a virtual experience of gamedays in Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium this season amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the East Carolina athletics department has launched the ECU Virtual Ticket.
  • This free of charge service will be available via the ECU Athletics Facebook page and will closely align with what fans in attendance would regularly see on the video board. It is intended to augment, not replace, the television broadcast.
  • The ECU Virtual Ticket begins one hour prior to kickoff with the Pirate IMG Sports Network pregame show while game action will feature a behind-the-scenes look at Jeff Charles and the radio crew’s gameday operations as they call the contest.
  • The Big Ten Conference’s academic support directors recognize the benefits of conference collaboration when faced with providing student-athlete services virtually. With that in mind, the unit leaders established bi-weekly academic director virtual meetings allowing leaders to learn from peers, share best practices, and troubleshoot solutions to an ever-changing student-athlete academic experience.
  • The first Big Ten Academic Support Staff Professional Development Event was born this summer. “Leading Through Change” brought athletic academic counselors, learning specialists, and tutorial personnel from all 14 Big Ten institutions together to discuss important topics and develop lasting professional relationships.
  • In addition to keynote presentations by Dr. Emmet Gill (Adjunct Assistant Professor, University of Texas) and Dr. Monica Flippin-Wynn (Assistant Vice President at the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education); several Big Ten academic support professionals led discussions on various topics.
  • The University of Richmond Athletics Department has announced the creation of the Richmond Spider Development (RSD) program.
  • The RSD will utilize a values-based and holistic approach to integrate strength and conditioning, sports medicine, sports nutrition, sports psychology, data analytics, sports science, leadership development, and several other University resources.
  • The RSD, which launched this fall and will be headquartered in the newly renovated Milhiser Gymnasium, will serve as a hub to maximize every aspect of the Spider student-athlete experience at the University of Richmond.
  • Texas Tech softball coach Adrian Gregory resigned Monday, marking the second abrupt departure in as many months by a coach of one of the school’s women’s sports programs.
  • Texas Tech fired women’s basketball coach Marlene Stollings in August amid allegations of a toxic and abusive atmosphere within that program. Neither the school nor Gregory gave a reason for her departure Tuesday, a little more than a year after she signed a five-year extension.
  • USA Today reported that the school acknowledged in response to an open-records request that it was conducting an internal review of the softball program under Gregory. That review concluded Monday, the day before Gregory resigned.
  • In a statement, Gregory said it was “best to part ways” with the school. Also in a statement, Texas Tech athletic director Kirby Hocutt thanked Gregory “for her contributions” in six seasons.
  • Baylor athletic director Mack Rhoades on Tuesday took exception to the tone of recent comments made by Houston football coach Dana Holgorsen in the aftermath of the two teams’ postponed game, which was to be played last Saturday.
  • Rhoades, in an appearance on SicEm365 Radio in Waco, Texas, was asked if he was disappointed by the “chirping” going on from Houston, and Rhoades admitted that he was.
  • “Yeah, you know, I’ll be candid: I’m disappointed in their head coach and the chirping,” Rhoades said. “And I let the [Houston athletic director] know it. And, you know, in my opinion, [it’s] not professional, but we’ll move on and we’ll move forward.”
  • Holgorsen, in a news conference on Monday, sounded frustrated when discussing the postponed game between Houston and Baylor.
  • In a follow up conversation with SIU athletic director Liz Jarnigan, Saluki athletics is continuing to mitigate the impacts of lost revenue.
  • Jarnigan informed the Daily Egyptian in an interview on Aug. 25 about the current status of the budget and how they plan on fixing it, and on Sept. 11 Jarnigan provided more specific numbers on how they are handling the situation. “We have cut three million from our operating budget [and] we have not replaced 13 positions. We are operating on a skeleton crew here,” Jarnigan said.
  • According to Jarnigan, the Chancellor plans on discussing the cuts that the athletics department has made with the board of trustees. “For football, we cut $250,000 out of their operating budget. Our sports operating budgets have all been cut by 25% or more this year,” Jarnigan said.
  • Jarnigan said a cut in the operating budget means that the Salukis would not be able to play a full schedule in the spring. But, Jarnigan said on Aug. 25 that spring play will be conference-only for SIU.
And that’s that.

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-The CollegeAD Staff-








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