Larry Scott’s final days as Pac-12 Commissioner are upon us.
The conference decided to part ways with the long-time Pac-12 commissioner back in March, ending his turbulent 11-year run in charge. Scott, however, remains at the helm until June 30, 2021 to assist in the transition.
When the news first broke, NBCSNW compiled a list of 10 possible candidates to become Scott’s successorincluding Oliver Luck and Ohio State’s Gene Smith. Another possible name being floated around was Gloria Nevarez , the former Pac-12 senior associate commissioner who left in 2018 to join the West Coast Conference.
According to Jon Wilner of Mercury News, you can now check Nevarez off the list. Wilner reports Nevarez has agreed to a contract extension with the WCC and the announcement is expected soon.
While the hunt is still on for Scott’s replacement, Wilner shared some other interesting tidbits about the search, including Pac-12 presidents and chancellors using a similar model in their search as when they first landed Scott from the Tennis Channel 12 years ago.
So, does that mean we can expect an updated Larry Scott as the new Pac-12 Commissioner?
If true, that eliminates Ohio State’s Gene Smith, Alabama’s Greg Byrne, Big 12’s Bob Bowlsby, and Nevarez. As for Oliver Luck, former West Virginia athletic director, NCAA executive vice president and commissioner of the XFL, Wilner says he has been “unable to confirm that Luck is involved … or that he has been eliminated from consideration.”
He also added there is no general consensus on the candidate model, meaning not all Pac-12 presidents believe it’s essential that Scott’s successor have a background in college sports. However, those candidates that come from professional sports leagues and/or the sports media industry, will be given “strong consideration.”
Many university sources reported a disconnect between the conference office and athletic departments during Scott’s tenure, noting he lacked communication. Finding a candidate who is able to forge healthy relationships with high-level officials should be a crucial part of the process.
For now, the search for Larry Scott’s replacement continues. What we do know is that TurnkeyZRG is the search firm leading the process and is currently vetting as many as 8-10 candidates. Wilner says the interviews are expected to start in the next few weeks.