With their opening at the athletic director position, some have had Boston College athletic director Brad Bates Michigan bound.
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Bates has been amongst several names floated in the media to replace Dave Brandon, who resigned his position recently after turmoil within the football program.
Why would he not be mentioned? For one thing, he is an athletic director at a major conference program. Second, and maybe most importantly to some in Ann Arbor, Brad Bates is a Michigan alumnus and a native Michigander. Returning to the Great Lakes State to shepherd the Wolverines would not only be an opportunity to lead a brand-name program, but a homecoming.
Yet, before anyone on the outside makes Brad Bates Michigan athletic director, consider that we have heard nothing but rumor so far, and the University of Michigan has other candidates to consider. Further, nobody aside from Bates himself knows his true level of interest.
As one might expect, Bates threw cold water on the speculation:
"There’s no value of me commenting on other institutions and their processes. I love it here at Boston College, my values align with this institution and I hope to be here a long time.Brad Bates (Bates hopes to be at Boston College ‘a long time’ – Matt Sheehan, Times Herald)"
In fairness, there is no answer he could have possibly given aside from a variation of “no comment,” and this response in and of itself means little. In sports, people say things all the time that they end up walking back. That is not intended as a slight at the honesty of our athletic director, but a basic principle of not giving your position away and not alienating your current employer.
It is not worth worrying about the “Brad Bates to Michigan” rumors right now. People over here are going to talk about it, and that’s fine, because it would obviously have a major impact on the Boston College athletics program, but there seems to be little substance to any of what we have heard so far. If anything, it is nice to know that we have a good enough athletic director to have his name floated for high-profile positions, though that can be a bad thing as well if such person is looking for the exits.
This is going to go on until Michigan hires Brandon’s replacement; Bates understands and so must we, but until there is any real indication he actually wants to leave or would get the job, the talk is all cheap.