A huge task ahead for the new Rutgers Athletic Director
5/17/2013 12:48:00 PM
It makes a catchy headline to say that Julie Hermann is the first female athletic director in Rutgers history. But it doesn't matter what's her gender. What matters is the set of credentials Hermann brings from the University of Louisville where she was the number-two person to one of the top a-d's in the nation, Tom Jurich. There are some who are questioning her qualifications because she was "only" second-in-command. But, in reality, those are the executives who do much of the heavy lifting in Fortune 500 companies while the CEO and President operates as the titular head or the "idea guy." I, for one, have no problem with Hermann's resume. If she was number-two at Louisville, based on that school's track record in competition, fund-raising and vision, that's good enough for me. What I'm more concerned about is if Hermann is able to successfully do the following which immediately loads her plate at Rutgers:
---Restore the image of the athletic department in the wake of the Mike Rice basketball coach scandal.
---Continue the drive to raise more money for the much-needed upgrade at the Rutgers Athletic Center.
---Move the growing football program to the next level on the nationwide scene.
---Deal with the sticky issue of women's basketball coach Vivian Stringer's final year on her million-dollar contract by either giving her a much-needed paycut or by showing her the door.
---And, last but certainly not least, successfully integrating Rutgers into the more prestigious Big Ten Conference, a move that is only 14-months away.
It's a lot but here's to hoping that Hermann's long stint at Louisville will give her the intestinal fortitude to get Rutgers back on the right path...and worthy of inclusion in the Big Ten.