Tuesday, May 19, 2020

The early names floated as Jarmond replacements

Martin Jarmond is now officially gone, so the BC side of the question is “who is next?”

BC is expected to name Vaughn Williams the interim. Williams was a long-time assistant AD under GDF and returned under Jarmond. He will probably be a candidate for the job full-time, but I would be surprised if any internal candidate got the job.

Based on speculation and gossip, I think Father Leahy and the Board still understand the importance of the role. While Jarmond’s time at BC was short, he validated their decision to focus on fundraising and being the face of the Athletic Department. In the midst of a Athletic Department Fund Raising Campaign and the most economically uncertain time in the last 50 years of college sports, I think they will still remain focused on someone who can be the face of the program and get people to open their wallets. These are some of the names already being floated. A few things to remember:

  1. Jarmond was not one of the early names leaked last time, so it is very possible our future Athletic Director is unknown to all of us. 
  2. BC has a history of over-correcting on a hire based on the previous hire's flaws. Gene was a bit dictatorial and had rubbed key people the wrong way, so they go with Brad Bates, who was not a big personality and was deferential. Bates was bland and a drag on fundraising, so they bring in a high-energy sales guy like Jarmond. The knock on Jarmond is that he wasn’t here for the long run, so it wouldn’t surprise me to see them hire someone who wants to be at BC a long time.

Vicky Chun, AD at Yale
Pros: Very experienced Athletic Director and fundraiser at private schools.
Cons: No experience at Power 5 programs.
Bottom Line: The Jarmond process showed that BC wanted to look beyond the traditional candidate pool. Don’t be surprised if they do it again by looking beyond the “boys club.”

Matt Hasselbeck, ESPN
Pros: Passionate about the job and the institution. Has the ability to be the face of the program yet is more than just a "rah rah" guy. He can switch hats to evaluate coaches and deal with the financials.
Cons: Zero experience.
Bottom Line: Matt’s supposed strong interest is intriguing. The timing is also intriguing as he was asked to help Jarmond during the Hafley process because Jarmond had rubbed a few influential people the wrong way. I don’t know why Hasselbeck would walk away from ESPN, but this is supposedly the one opportunity that would do it. I always liked him, but think the politics of this process will kill his candidacy.

Mark Jackson, AD at Villanova
Pros: From Boston, so this would/could be a final stop. Has been a big fundraiser and understands the importance of basketball. Also worked for Raiders, Patriots and USC, so he knows football.
Cons: You could claim he was in the right place at the right time for Villanova. USC, which knew him well, passed on him when they had their opening.
Bottom Line: He checks nearly every box you would want in a BC Athletic Director, but the obvious choice never seems to survive this process.

Graham Neff, Deputy AD at Clemson
Pros: CFO and business head of the biggest cash cow in the ACC. Deep ACC ties. Understands the financial implications ahead as well as anyone.
Cons: No history fundraising at a private school. Never made a coaching hire.
Bottom Line: He will probably be a P5 AD within five years and does keep BC firmly tied to the ACC decision makers, but he is still very young and has no ties to BC or any school like BC.

Zac Selmon, Sr Associate AD at Oklahoma
Pros: Like Jarmond, he is a young fundraiser from a football power. Has deep ties to the ACC (played at Wake, worked at UNC).
Cons: Has never made a coaching hire.
Bottom Line: His profile and career trajectory is close enough to Jarmond's that you can understand BC’s interest. But as I wrote, we tend to over-correct on hires, so I would be surprised if we hired Jarmond 2.0.

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