On May 5th, shortly after it was announced that Lee Fowler was leaving NC State I wrote a lengthy list of my idea of the requirements of who would have the best chance of success leading NC State’s athletics into the 2010 decade:
In short, State should hire someone who meets this basic set of requirements. Quickly, let’s review:
- Athletic Director experience at a BCS/Power Conference school – CHECK
- A successful record in managing football and basketball (conference championship-level teams, and one that’s an NCAA Tournament regular in basketball) CHECK
- A sucessful and dynamic fundraiser – CHECK
- One who is successful public relations, works well with the press, and Internet management – CHECK
- Demonstrated innovative and successful brand management, where value and media income are maximized – CHECK
- Successful management of NCAA rules and regulations (no major probations or lingering questions) – CHECK, only secondary violations
- Has managerial courage – will make the tough call when it needs making - BIG, BIG CHECK
- Successful management of the academic requirements required by the University – CHECK
Of the list I wrote, Dr. Yow meets every single requirement, and fairly easily at that. Granted, I was by no means the hiring manager, nor did I have a thing to do with the hiring process, and quite frankly, what I wrote back then was little more than a wish-listing created by a fan hopeful of the best possible outcome. Today, we got that best possible outcome, and it is clear to me that NC State is in the best hands it’s been in for years, possibly even in the last 50 years.
Let’s let the University of Maryland’s press release announcing her departure for Raleigh speak for itself:
During her service at Maryland, a 16-year period in which a remarkable 54 percent of Maryland’s 37 national championships have been won, the department has completed a $180 million expansion and upgrade of facilities, has had steadily improving academic results among its student-athletes, has balanced each of its 16 budgets and has won a remarkable 20 team national championships – among the top programs in the nation.
In an era when athletic directors move frequently, Debbie Yow came to Maryland, set a vision for Terrapin Athletics and stayed the course until the majority of her goals have been met.
This is exactly what NC State has needed since, well, since as long as I can remember. As the largest university in the state, one blessed with passionate die-hard fans who support their teams through thick and thin, State’s needs a leader with Yow’s qualities if it is to ever have a chance to succeed. Now that Dr. Yow is in place, it’s my feeling that the table is set for a feast of Wolfpack victories on every field, court, course or track where it competes. That feast will be one that is gobbled down by what is frankly a starving mass that’s waited a long, long time. Too long.
That doesn’t mean that today means State will suddenly be great everywhere, there’s a lot of work to do. That work will take a long time and it will require a great deal of patience to see those results begin to show themselves. Patience is in short supply in West Raleigh at times, but that’s exactly what Yow will need, and that’s quite frankly what she deserves. Her track record says to trust her, and that’s what we should do — even when we disagree with her methods or decisions.
With that, I offer my welcome to Dr. Debbie Yow and wish her the best as she works as an agent of change in the deadwood forest of the Athletic Department, of Wolfpack Sports Marketing and with us – the fans of NC State who are too accustomed to negativity and failure. It all needs changing and I look forward to that happening.