Come this June, the Pac-12 will purchase one final plane ticket for current Commissioner Larry Scott, and it will be a one-way ticket to anywhere but here.
While Scott did bring the Pac-12 up to date and into the 2000s (His predecessor Tom Hansen had fallen woefully behind the times) with marketing and branding, it became apparent rather quickly that this former CEO of the Women’s Tennis Association did not understand college athletics, especially the two money-making sports of Football and Men’s Basketball.
Depending on who you talk to, he botched the 2010 coup to lure away Texas and Oklahoma (as well as others) to form the Pac-16. It would have been the very first mega-conference and ready to stand toe to toe with what the SEC and Big Ten would soon become. And while many of us admired Scott’s ambition at the time, one can’t help but think that he screwed that one up as well.
(The Pac-16 would never have been left out of the CFP, that’s for sure.}
But Scott comes in with his background in women’s tennis, his San Francisco/Silicon Valley-based “west-coast cool” attitude, and a hard to connect with, pretentious air about him. Perhaps the schools, Texas mainly, were thinking, “Is this the guy we really want to work with for the next decade or so?”
Perhaps they didn’t just reject Scott’s proposal, perhaps they rejected Scott. He didn’t fit in, he didn’t talk the language, he was an outsider. And as the years progressed and his sins as a leader came to light, there’s no doubt about it… he really, really didn’t fit in.
Over the past couple of years, most of us became aware of Scott’s irresponsible spending, bending (if not breaking) of sound moral leadership principles, and to put it frankly, overall hubris. So, no need to do a deep dive here. I wrote on it a couple of years back (here and here).
To read the comments to this article, click Right Here to our new forum. (And see all the Oregon Sports News brought to you!)
If you want to dig deeper you can go to oregonlive.com, and in their search engine type in “John Canzano, Larry Scott” and you’ll find dozens of articles covering the transgressions of Larry Scott. Whether you’re a fan of Canzano or not, he was a leader in breaking news on Scott’s poor leadership, exotic spending, and ethically challenged nature.
Perhaps Scott will go on to find success in a different industry. One that is more in tune with his Gordon Gekko type of leadership skills, because college athletics certainly wasn’t it.
It’s now up to the Pac-12 CEO Group, headed by Oregon President Michael Schill, to get it right. They must make a home-run hire. One who is likable, approachable, fiscally responsible, understands college athletics and understands that football and men’s basketball are the top priority. Take care of those two sports first, and you’ll see that the non-revenue sports will be in fine health.
And if they screw it up? No biggie. It’s only the end of the Pac-12 as we now know it.
Top photo credit: Tom Corno
Announcement: FishDuck is going to four days a week for a few months, (Sunday-Monday-Wednesday-Friday) and the next article will be on Sunday. Go to the forum for more topics and Oregon Sports News!
Darren Perkins is a sales professional and 1997 Oregon graduate. After finishing school, he escaped the rain and moved to sunny Southern California where he studied screenwriting for two years at UCLA. Darren grew up in Eugene and in 1980, at the tender age of five, he attended his first Oregon football game. His lasting memory from that experience was an enthusiastic Don Essig announcing to the crowd: “Reggie Ogburn, completes a pass to… Reggie Ogburn.” Captivated by such a thrilling play, Darren’s been hooked on Oregon football ever since. Currently living in Spokane, Darren enjoys flaunting his yellow and green superiority complex over friends and family in Cougar country.
New! Oregon Sports News and Articles Curated Every Day for All Duck Fans!
Want to read all the Oregon Sports Articles in one place? Check out our new FishDuck Feed for Oregon Sports News and Articles aggregated every day for Duck fans and it is free. Over 50 articles curated in one day recently!
The Our Beloved Ducks Forum (OBD) is where we we discuss the article above and many more topics, as it is so much easier in a message board format over there. At the free OBD forum we will be posting Oregon Sports article links, the daily Press Releases from the Athletic Department and the news coming out every day.
Be a part of the forum and stay caught up! When you wish to post there, do know that you are protected just as you were on FishDuck. Join us on the free forum right here!
Our 33 rules at the free OBD Forum can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) keep it clean, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics. Easy-peasy!
OBD Forum members….we got your back. No Trolls Allowed!