We will have more time to discuss the Barbour Era at Cal in a backwards looking sense. Right now, we're all just trying to figure out what is going to happen in the immediate forward looking sense. We should find out more about that at a press conference today scheduled for 1 PM. Right now, Jon Wilner is reporting the following things while cackling with glee in his underground lair:
Cal will name an interim athletic director while it searches for Barbour's replacement.
The administration official declined to identify the interim by name but said he or she would be a former student-athlete and "prominent alum of the university."
Time to reveal that it is, indeed, I who shall become the interim director! Marching band is part of athletics, right?
We'll presumably find out who that is at the 1 PM presser. Barbour isn't leaving Cal altogether, per Wilner:
Barbour's last day will be July 15. At that time, she will transition to a different role at the school: working on the academic side in a sports management program.
I don't know what that means, really. Perhaps Barbour and Cal don't either at this time. Perhaps we'll find out more at the 1 PM press conference.
Earlier this year, we took a look at Sandy Barbour's contract. These Regents notes indicate that her contract runs through June 30, 2015 (page 16 of the PDF). So, a decision on her future with Cal was pending within at least the next 368 days or so. Either they give her an extension or she becomes a lame duck AD. I cannot speak as to the decision making process here. I can't speculate as to whether she requested an extension and was rejected or did not want an extension or what happened. None of us really know at the moment. CGB Hall Of Famer Fiatlux, who sometimes has information on these things, does not seem to think this was a "Rejected extension situation":
We may get more information at the press avail later.
For the 2013-2014 year, her salary is $429,439 (that is listed on page 17 of the Regents notes PDF). Now, paragraph 12 on page 4 of this PDF notes that if she is fired without cause, then she gets 100% of her remaining salary. However, it does not appear that she is being fired here. She is stepping down and being reassigned to a different area of the Department. Paragraph 11 allows them to mutually terminate the contract terms, so perhaps that is what they are doing here. Is she going to get paid $429,439 to be "on the academic side in a sports management program"?
We're already paying 2 head coaches, 2 defensive coordinators, are we going to be paying 2 Athletic Directors? Given the financial concerns surrounding the program, I'm hopeful we'll get some more information at the press conference or some time after. My personal opinion is that Sandy Barbour has been worth every penny. However, independent of the job she has done, it does not make sense to pay somebody Director level money if they are not going to be the director.
So, that kind of came out of nowhere. We're not really journalists here, so we are never looking to break stories. When my source provided me with information and a total belief that this was going to happen today, we decided to run a post on it asap to get the word out. I do not have a lot of experience with breaking news like this. We did it with the Ben Braun story lo those many years ago, but I do not view us as journalists, more insane fans. I was nervous about the whole process, but when I saw that Jon Wilner, a real journalist (it says so right on his paycheck), confirmed it, there was this rush of excitement and adrenaline. It's kind of exciting to play journalist now and then.
Overall, though, I'll leave it to the journalists to break the news. All I want is for Cal to be successful. I thought we had made great strides under Sandy Barbour's leadership with Cal. It's time for a new leader and I'm hopeful that they will be able to match or exceed her. Cal faces a lot of challenges between now and, say, 2053 when the stadium debt is to be paid off. They need somebody who can shepherd the Department through these interesting times. Good luck to Sandy in whatever endeavors in which she finds herself.
We'll have a post up prior to 1 PM to live blog the announcement. GO BEARS!