Fresno State’s athletic director, Terry Tumey, has a new lease on life – it just comes with more pressure and higher-than-ever stakes.
Tumey, who arrived to Fresno State in 2018, reached a two-year contract extension with the university, Tumey revealed on Friday.
State of Play: While Tumey has made shrewd moves to boost revenue – through a new apparel deal with Adidas – and seen football performance and attendance rise to new heights, the university’s athletic program suffers from significant deficiencies.
- Fresno State kicked off the 2022 football season with a carefully-crafted pitch to seek entrance in the Pac-12 as rumors swirled that UCLA and USC would depart for the Big 10.
- The pitch for a move into a Power Five conference has settled into quiet discussions with the Big 12, sources told The Sun, with less-than-ideal odds that the university’s athletics programs will make the leap onto a larger, more competitive stage.
- Tumey’s tenure as Athletic Director may very well be judged by his ability to propel athletics programs into a better conference and drive revenue even higher than he has to this point.
Hindrances abound: Meanwhile, the university cut an ill-fated naming rights deal with Valley Children’s Healthcare for the naming rights for one of its most-utilized athletics facility – Bulldog Stadium – that ultimately cost the university more in sponsorship dollars than it generated.
- Fresno State’s president Saul Jimenez-Sandoval tried spinning the money loser deal into a positive by claiming it was still beneficial to the university.
- The latter half of 2022, Fresno State found itself as a passenger in a 20-year, $720 million sales tax measure aimed at improving campus and athletics facilities, with particular focus on Valley Children’s Stadium.
- The measure failed to capture simple majority support from voters during the November election.