SBD/Issue 62/Collegiate Sports

IMG Intercollegiate Forum: Going One-On-One With David Brandon

Brandon Looking To Bring Uniformity
To The Univ. Of Michigan Brand

Michigan AD and former Domino's Pizza CEO David Brandon sat for a One-On-One interview this morning during the IMG Intercollegiate Athletics Forum hosted by SBD/SBJ. The following are some of the highlights of the interview.

Q: What have you learned in your first nine months as Athletic Director?

Brandon: Don’t read blogs. Don’t listen to talk radio.

Q: What is more challenging, complying with NCAA rules or SEC rules?

Brandon: NCAA. I spent less time with lawyers doing a billion dollar transaction than I did with the recent NCAA case. The amount of resources and effort we used from something that started as a newspaper article was huge. If you aggregate the cost, it was between 1.5 and 2 million dollars in internal costs. My understanding is there are north of 80 to 90 cases currently in the NCAA queue. We’ve created a cottage industry that is stripping resources out of the athletic departments. It’s a broken system and needs reform.

Q: Yesterday we had speakers suggesting we shred the NCAA rulebook. Do you agree?

Brandon: Maybe. I would just suggest that massive reform is needed. Before they add rules, they should make sure the stuff they already have is being universally enforced and communicated.

Q: What feedback did you get when there was the possibility that Michigan would not play Ohio State in the last game of the season?

Brandon: One e-mail said, “You have ruined my life.” Another one said, “You have ruined my family.” Those are a tremendous testament to the emotional connection people have with that game.

Q: Where can the Michigan brand better develop itself?

Brandon: I came in with the promise of consistency. Each coach used to be afforded the ability to create their own logo, and all of a sudden we had all of these different logos on the board. I said that we need to bring consistency and uniformity in the way we present our brand and message.

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