As of Monday, Athletic Director Dan Radakovich has accepted a new position as the new Clemson athletic director. This comes as a shock to much of the Tech athletic community due to the fact that Radakovich’s intentions were known only to himself. Institute President G.P. “Bud” Peterson himself was left in the dark, only to find out from Clemson’s president.
Ironically enough, during his press conference on the same day, Radakovich spoke of having transparency within his new athletic department. This is the same individual who cost Tech an ACC championship and hefty fines with the NCAA simply by avoiding transparency.
While this does strike a blow to Tech’s athletic department, especially during a rocky football season, Radakovich’s departure is not as painful as it may seem.
It goes without saying that Radakovich has been helpful to the Institute in a few different ways, particularly in helping to create new facilities that have benefited the athletic department as a whole. He made these improvements while taking advantage of a bad economy, thereby helping Tech to reduce the cost of these improvements in the long run.
Yet many of Radakovich’s policies have also inhibited the growth of our athletics. Various ticket policies that he enacted—policies inevitably shaped by his time at LSU, a school with a massive localized fan base—increased prices and created hurdles for students and alumni to purchase tickets. In trying to promote Tech to the larger Atlanta market and thus attract a wider swath of fans, Radakovich caused a great deal of frustration to devoted fans among the students and alumni.
With Radakovich gone, Tech has the chance to hire a new AD that better understands the Tech community and the unique situation of its athletic program—someone who is truly enthusiastic about guiding Tech athletics and engaging its large, if widespread, fan base.