Chip Brown’s latest report says it’s a “fluid situation,” and that Dodds will only serve until a new AD is hired.
For all the current dysfunction around UT athletics—from the struggles of the football and basketball teams to the Bev Kearney situation—Dodds was certainly a groundbreaking and great AD.
‘ Chip Brown first reported it September 13: longtime University of Texas athletic director De Loss Dodds was planning to step down.
The school denied it, but Dodds’ own comments, both before and after the report, were not very convincing (I said the rumor was “100 percent believable” ten days ago, and that was not a bold opinion).
Now comes a report from the columnist who probably has the greatest access to UT’s AD: Kirk Bohls of the Texas athletic director De Loss Dodds will announce Tuesday afternoon that he will step down next August after 32 years in the position, three well-connected sources told the American-Statesman on Monday. “He’s going to announce it tomorrow,” one of the well-placed sources said.
Dodds, 76, will announce his retirement after vigorously denying a report earlier this month that he would leave his job before the end of this year. 31, 2014, and will remain on as a consultant through 2015. “They were going to do it today but decided to wait because they didn’t want to detract from the passing of (legendary former Longhorn quarterback) James Street.” Bohls and Haurwitz wrote that Dodds, who will remain under contract to UT as a consultant, intends to announce his last day as August 31, 2014, but that UT hoped to bring on his successor by December.
It would be wrong if UT didn’t consider its strongest internal candidate, whose 25-year career has involved not just women’s sports (including UT’s current most successful program, volleyball) but sponsorships, broadcasting, and licensing with marketing behemoth (and Longhorn Network broker) IMG.
Of course, that can go either way: on the one hand, Plonsky is a person that you might want to promote, or at least keep around for continuity. College sports, and University of Texas athletics, are not as progressive and female-friendly as Texas politics. Another De Loss protege, dating back to her time as the women’s basketball coach at Kansas State.
On the other, it could be time to clean house all the way. Also, Texas will elect a female governor before the University of Texas has a female athletic director. She also coached at Texas A&M before serving as the Aggies’ senior associate athletics director. Still, bringing football to a university for the first time, which Hickey did with UTSA in 2011, is not the same thing as as running the country’s biggest football program—even if the Roadrunners do have the state’s only other coach besides Mack Brown to win the BCS.
Dodds’ decision to resign on more or less his own terms, even under pressure, actually feels like something of a power move: given the lengthy timetable, and his continued role as a consultant, he’ll likely have a lot of input into UT president William Powers Jr.’s search for a successor. Here’s ten names to think about: A common, but laughable scenario.
People who think that being the football coach qualifies you to run a 0 million athletic department in this day and age are also, well, people who think that just because they watch a lot of college football, they’re qualifed to hire and fire their school’s head coach.
In any case, that’s not how this is going to go down. If Mack Brown’s showing up for work every day in 2014 (or 2015), he’ll be coaching football, even if it’s not in Austin.
Otherwise, he’ll collect his buyout, maybe turn up on ESPN for a few seasons, and then come back for his statue or new building.