Athletic Director

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Athletic Director

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Week Seven Forum- Ranking the duties of an Athletic Director 10 pts.

Due Date: End of Week 7

Forum 7:

The Athletic Director’s Dilemma

Jo Ann Cochran is the Athletic Director at Southwest Coast University (SCU), a small D-II liberal arts institution just south of Malibu, which competes in the California Collegiate Athletic Association.

While thumbing through the department’s anonymous comments, she learns of two different relationships that involve student-athletes and coaches. These ‘Anonymous Comment Boxes’ are posted in every sporting facility where SCU plays its home games. One a month, Jo Anne takes time to read through the comments of fans and visitors whose comments usually follow a predictable pattern. However, these comments caught Jo Anne totally off guard. Primarily because she thinks she has a good grip on the culture and subculture of her department. Although she has never been referred to as a micro-manager, Jo Anne prides herself in knowing the nuts and bolts of every unit.

As she read through the comments that she believe was written by a student-athlete and a staff member, her blood began to boil. Several emotions and thoughts were running through her head. Her mind traveled back to the past Saturday where she stood in front of 53 parents on a major recruiting weekend asking for their trust by sending their sons and daughters to SCU. She pledged to continue to develop them as leaders and to create citizens who will make an impact in the community at large. Over eighty-five percent of the student-athletes who visited that weekend committed to come to Southwest Coast University.

Most of all, she feels hypocritical. How could coaches violate her trust, stoop so low, and manipulate the young minds that have been entrusted to their care? Realizing that these are merely accusations, she understands she needs to address the issues cautiously but swiftly. Over the next few days, Jo Anne lost sleep and had trouble focusing at work.

She calls in Sue James, the Compliance Officer and confidante. During the conversation Sue responds, “Half the department has been talking about it for a couple of weeks. They have been …”

Jo Anne cut her off. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“I thought you knew,” Sue shot back.

During the conversation, Jo Anne learns that one relationship (heterosexual) is between a 21 year-old senior student-athlete and a 25 year-old assistant coach. The other relationship is between a recently divorced 43 year-old Head Coach and a 19 year-old student-athlete.

As far as Jo Anne can gather from Sue and other sources, the relationships have not been disruptive on the perspective teams. She has investigated the matter. She later finds that one relationship is heterosexual and one relationship is a homosexual. It is now time to act.

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