- Paul Sherman/Daily
BY THE MICHIGAN DAILY
Published October 31, 2014
University President Mark Schlissel announced Friday afternoon that Dave Brandon will step down from his position as Michigan Athletic Director today, marking the end of a five-year tenure fraught with controversy.
Here’s a timeline of Brandon’s term at the University.
Jan 5., 2010: The University announced Brandon would become the next University Athletic Director, pending approval from the University’s Board of Regents. The five-year appointment began March 8, 2010.
“I am confident that he will carry on the tradition of excellence in U-M athletics as we enter a new era,” former University President Mary Sue Coleman said at the time.
March 8, 2010: Brandon's tenure at Michigan began. Later, in 2012 Brandon’s employment agreement was extended, putting him under contract with the University through June 30, 2018.
Jan. 6, 2011: After a 7-6 season and a blowout Gator Bowl loss to Mississippi State, Brandon relieved Rich Rodriguez of his duties as football coach. The Athletic Director said Rodriguez failed six criteria — game performance, academic performance, recruiting, leadership, University image and program image — which resulted in the coach’s termination.
Jan. 11, 2011: Brandon hired then-San Diego State coach Brady Hoke to replace Rodriguez. Hoke, a former assistant for the Wolverines, became the 19th coach in Michigan football history.
Summer 2011: The price of student football season tickets rose to $240, which was the highest point under Brandon’s administration at the time. Student tickets rose to $295 in 2014.
Aug. 30, 2013: A large Kraft macaroni noodle appeared in front of Michigan Stadium days before the Wolverines’ home opener. Later, the Athletic Department said the noodle was part of a Friday promotion and wasn’t meant to remain public on Football Saturdays.
Sept. 14, 2013: The Michigan Athletic Department paid for skywriting that spelled out “GO BLUE” over various parts of Michigan, including above Spartan Stadium in East Lansing. The series of 55 skywriting messages reportedly cost $100 per message.
Jan. 28, 2014: The Michigan Daily reported that kicker Brendan Gibbons had been permanently separated from the University after an alleged sexual assault that reportedly occurred on Nov. 22, 2009.
Sept. 22, 2014: A “miscommunication in the approval process” led to U-Go’s offering two free tickets to Michigan’s Sept. 27 game vs. Minnesota with the purchase of two Coca-Cola products — effectively a 98-percent discount.
Sept. 27, 2014: During Michigan’s first Big Ten game of the season against the Gophers, sophomore quarterback Shane Morris took a strong helmet-to-helmet hit. When Morris got up, he wobbled and was held up by offensive lineman Ben Braden but was kept in the game by coaches. During Hoke’s weekly press conference two days later, he said he hadn’t been in contact with Brandon and that Morris’ only injury was a high ankle sprain. At 12:52 a.m. early Tuesday morning, Brandon issued a statement saying Morris had sustained a “mild, probable concussion.”
In an interview with the Daily a week later, Brandon said he had been in contact with Hoke despite the miscommunication from the fourth-year coach.
Sept. 30, 2014: A student rally calling for Brandon’s firing was held on the Diag. The protest was organized in response to a petition started Sept. 29 that as of today has amassed 11,350 signatures. The Daily estimated hundreds of students attended the rally that eventually moved to Schlissel’s house.
Oct. 2, 2014: In an exclusive interview with the Daily, Brandon stated that he had no intention of resigning, though he admitted that mistakes had been made by the Athletic Department and that there was work to be done in rectifying its relationship with the student body.
Oct. 23, 2014: Along with Central Student Government President Bobby Dishell, a Public Policy senior, Brandon announced student season-ticket prices will be $175 for a seven-game slate in 2015, down from 2014’s price of $280 for the same number of games.
At the same time, he announced the price of non-student tickets wouldn’t rise for a third straight year.
Oct. 28, 2014: MGoBlog.com reported Brandon had sent dozens of e-mails to fans perceived by many to be confrontational and unprofessional. The e-mails included messages from Brandon to frustrated alumni telling them to “quit drinking and go to bed” and, “I suggest you find a new team to support.”
Oct. 31, 2014: Schlissel announces Brandon’s resignation at an afternoon press conference.