The search for a new athletic director will have an interim A.D., and Texas A&M football fans will be glad to know who that is.
Scott Woodward left Texas A&M as soon as LSU’s athletic director position came open. It was a surprising turn of events given in the previous 18 months, Woodward had stolen Jimbo Fisher from Florida State for Texas A&M football, said publicly he did not care about going home to LSU, then stole Buzz Williams from Virginia Tech to coach the basketball team.
It appeared to all outside the university that all was well.
Woodward confirmed after taking the LSU job he could not resist returning home. He not only attended LSU as a student and worked there for several years before spending the last 16 years at different universities, but he was born and raised in southern Louisiana. It wasn’t hard to see the writing on the wall once the LSU job became available.
It puts the Aggies in a tough situation. Will Jimbo Fisher follow at some point down the road? He doesn’t have a buyout, but his fully guaranteed contract ceases to be if Fisher leaves on his own. He is only guaranteed this money if he is fired. Would LSU be able to give him a deal that approaches $7.5 million per season?
Still, it’s only natural to believe Fisher would have one eye towards the job if Ed Orgeron were ever let go by Woodward. Fisher doesn’t have nearly the same ties to LSU as Woodward, other than spending a handful of seasons there as an assistant, but the two have a fantastic working relationship.
One way to ensure Fisher is happy would be to include him in the process of selecting the next athletic director. He admitted Woodward was a big reason he took the Aggie job in the first place, so providing him someone he has as much confidence in and support from is paramount.
The good news here is Texas A&M is including a former head football coach and someone Fisher has a great relationship with in the search for a new athletic director. R.C. Slocum has been named interim athletic director as the university looks to immediately begin a search to replace Woodward.
Texas A&M President Michael Young had this to say about the appointment of Slocum:
“R.C. has served as an Ambassador for Texas A&M for decades,” Young said. “While reporting to me as a special assistant, R.C. has demonstrated his dedication to this University and always is an exemplary representative for Aggies everywhere. He has shown proven leadership with coaches, staff and student athletes throughout his many roles at Texas A&M University.”
Slocum has the most wins as a head coach in Texas A&M’s history. He was the head football coach from 1989-2002, won four conference championships and never had a losing season. He’s been involved with the program for nearly five decades and will be a major help in the search for a permanent hire.