Rutgers Athletic Staff Has No Trust In Julie Hermann
As controversy continues to linger over incoming Rutgers University Athletic Director Julie Hermann several coaches and staff have expressed concern over her ability to lead.
“How can anybody trust her at this point?” asked one athletic department official according to the Star-Ledger. “How can the staff trust her? How can donors? Parents? Coaches? The Big Ten? I don’t know how we’ll raise money.
Another member of the department, a coach, said he angry at the negative attention being directed at Rutgers. But he is optimistic Hermann can get Rutgers through the storm. “She is a very capable lady with a big challenge ahead of her,” the coach said. “I think she can work through this.”
Hermann is scheduled to take over for Tim Pernetti as Athletic Director on June 17 as revelations about her past including questionable coaching techniques while head volleyball coach at Tennessee and a sexual discrimination suit in which a female assistant coach claims she was fired after reporting sexual harrassment from a male coach.
One female member of the department was troubled by Hermann not recalling comments caught on video she made to the bride, her assistant coach, discouraging her from getting pregnant because it could threaten her job. “I’m female. I’ve been in weddings,” she told the paper. “Trust me, you remember every bridesmaid dress you’ve had to buy.”
Others expressed concern that there will always be a feeling of what else could come out about Hermann’s past. “She’s going to be a powerless AD and everybody’s going to be wondering, ‘Okay, when is the other shoe going to drop?’” said a male senior official to the Star-Ledger. “I just don’t see how she can be successful here. It’s set up to fail.”
Hermann said she will take a “listening tour” of the department once she is in place.s
Meanwhile, the Asbury Park Press calculates that Rutgers has spent $2.3 million on the athletic department scandal. The amount includes a $1.2 million settlement with Pernetti, $475,000 for Mike Rice, a $420,000 payout to general counsel John Wolf plus $70,000 to a headhunting company to find the next A.D. and $150,000 to a crisis management company.