Main Pat Richter Page
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Media Q&A with Richter
John Wiley Comments
Barry Alvarez Comments
Media Final Q&A
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Statement by Donna E. Shalala
Statement by Barry Alvarez
Statement by Jane Albright
Statement by Bob Bowlsly
Statement by Joel Maturi
Statement by James E. Delany
Media Q&A Final
Can you describe how the transition will work until April, 2004?
Chancellor Wiley: I'm sure you're all interested in that, but I really don't think we ought to get into it today. We've done a lot of thinking about it, we're not going to...When we're ready to make announcements, we will.
What intrigued you about the Athletic Director position?
Coach Alvarez: You know, as I've said, always in the back of my mind I felt that someday I wanted to be in the administrative end, but it's always intrigued me and as you ask that, I want to make it perfectly clear to eliminate any negative recruiting, that I plan on continuing to be the football coach and I am very excited about the future of our football program. But I've always been very interested in it and felt that was the direction I wanted to move as I moved on in my career. And I felt that I was fortunate enough, Pat gave me an opportunity to be involved in the management team and just the timing of this worked out, and worked out right.
How will you make it work with both the AD and football coaching jobs?
Coach Alvarez: How will I justify my being in two places at one time? (laugh) Well, as I mentioned before, I would not have considered this job had there not been good people in place. People that I can count on, people that I can trust, people that are bright in their areas. I will have a deputy. I can't be in two places. I will put my emphasis on football, I cannot let football slide. I'll put a plan together and somewhere along there I will have a deputy on the administrative side. I feel as though I can communicate between the two and with good leadership and good support underneath me, to be able to handle it.
Do you have a timetable for your coaching career?
Coach Alvarez: I don't have a timetable.
Would you say that one day you would be just the Athletic Director and no longer the football coach?
Coach Alvarez: I would say that would be direction that I would move.
What do you think the greatest challenges are of the dual role?
Coach Alvarez: It's interesting, Mackovic's first response was 'what is your first inclination?' and I said 'I'm excited about the job', so he said 'then you should take the job' and then he shared with me some things. John Robinson said, 'how old are you?' I told him I was 56. '56?' He said you could take the AD's job and take a part-time job pumping gas and handle it. Both of them said, in all seriousness, you better have someone on the administrative side who is bright and you better have some people as associates that you can trust and I feel that I have that.
Since becoming part of the administration, what has enlightened you the most about the workings of the athletic department?
Coach Alvarez: I wouldn't really say that I have been enlightened or surprised by anything that I have seen. Possibly you talk about things that I wouldn't be talking about in football meetings, things that I would move on from rather quickly. But I can't say that anything really surprises me, or did surprise me.
Was anyone else considered for the position?
Coach Alvarez: You're asking the wrong guy.
Chancellor Wiley: We went through a lot of thinking and planning and discussing and talking and it became very clear to me that this was the right choice.
On the football side, will you have to delegate any more responsibilities to your assistant coaches?
Coach Alvarez: I don't know how I can rely on them anymore. As I said, football will be a priority to me. There has to be an emphasis on football, yet I think I can that I can break up my day and do both. I delegate--my staff is set up where I delegate and I hold them accountable.
Who will be in charge of overseeing and evaluating the football coach?
Coach Alvarez: We talked about that earlier today, who should evaluate...
Chancellor Wiley: Barry's preference is for the AD to evaluate the football coach (laughter). As a matter of fact, the AD reports to me and Casey Nagy in my office will have the responsibility for keeping close tabs on what's going on here and advising me on that and we'll be involved in the evaluation, so don't worry about it.
Is it important to you to be able to pick your successor as football coach?
Coach Alvarez: It's important to me, yes. You know when you put so much into a program, you build a program, you want to sustain it so it is very important to me. We're not talking about the near future, I want to emphasize that.
What kind of role do you envision for Dave McDonald?
Chancellor Wiley: I said earlier that I really don't want to get into any of the transition issues right now. We've got a lot of things to think about and talk about and straighten out and put in place. In due course, we'll tell you how that will all shake out, but we're very fortunate. I will have to underline and reemphasize this, we are very fortunate to have a good solid year here to arrange a smooth transition here. I can't tell you how fortunate the athletic department is to be relieved of the kind of uncertainty the rest of the university will be going through during these times. We know where they are, what their trajectory is and what direction they're heading in the future and that is invaluable for planning. So we will put a very solid transition together. I wish we could do this in all areas of the university.
What makes you believe that Alvarez can handle both roles?
Pat Richter: First let me just say this, John and I discussed this a long time ago and laid out the various options for John. This is his call, I certainly totally support it because we went back to the early days when I first came on board and the football coach was hired, then the athletic director was hired, then the chancellor was hired. Nobody was responsible for anybody and that's the way it has to be. The Chancellor has to make that selection and obviously I think that there is not a lot of differences. It's competitive, I understand that football is a huge part of what we do, but it's also, I think you've seen, that the selection of the right coaches, the coaches that have been here that have opportunities at other places, they're financials involved and the selection. There are certainly some great challenges. He'll be facing challenges that maybe I wasn't faced with and there will be some new ones out there, but I went through it and I kept telling him for the last couple of years when we talked about this, 'there's no way you want to do this. Are you sure you want to do this? Why would you want to do this?' Just do a gut-check so to speak. He knows who he's gone through in some cases because you know, we've talked, and we are good friends. It's not that when I go down there, we just talk football, we talk about a lot of things, a lot of issues that have happened and things that are beyond our control so I'm trying to give him a flavor of exactly what you have to face. I think in some way he keeps coming back and saying 'I'm still in it,' and I think that's important because it's not something you go into casually and he doesn't. He's capable and he knows what's at risk and it's a huge enterprise. There are things that we are going to have to work through in terms of understanding the things that you have to do and priorities. He'll do it a lot differently than I do because he's got other things. You talk about from July to early January in recruiting, that's a total obsession. I know that it's always helped with coaches that have changed jobs, coaches and the amount of time that they put into their profession. If they did that anywhere else in any other profession, they would be totally, wildly successful. People have no clue how much time the coaches put into their profession. And so that to me, that he does whatever it takes. He kept coming back and nothing seemed to deflect that interest.