Update: 10/31 1:35 p.m. ET
University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel announced Friday afternoon that he accepted the resignation of athletic director Dave Brandon Friday morning.
"This morning I accepted the resignation of athletic director Dave Brandon," Schlissel said. "Dave feels that it would be in the best interest of our student-athletes, our athletic department and our university community if he moved on to other challenges. I agree with this decision."
Schlissel said that Brandon presented the idea of his resignation on Wednesday, but he was unsure what the "ultimate factors" were that led to Brandon ultimately following through with the decision.
Schlissel also announced that former Michigan football player James Hackett will serve as the school's interim athletic director while the search for a new athletic director begins. Hackett played for the Wolverines under renowned UM head coach Bo Schembechler during the 1970s.
"I'm humbled to help during this transition period," Hackett said.
Hackett spent 19 years as the CEO of Steelcase, an office furniture company based out of Grand Rapids, Mich. He graduated from Michigan in 1977.
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Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon will resign at a news conference Friday afternoon, according to ESPN’s Brett McMurphy, TheWolverine.com, and The Detroit News. The university announced late Friday morning that it’d hold a 1:30 p.m. ET news conference hosted by president Mark Schlissel, but did not provide specifics other than saying that Schlissel would be making an announcement.
According to The Detroit News, Brandon is “not expected to attend” the news conference and an interim AD is expected to be named.
Brandon’s expected resignation marks the end of a problematic last few months. In addition to the Wolverines’ 3-5 start on the football field under Brady Hoke, whom Brandon hired, Brandon has been criticized for the handling of Shane Morris’ head injury after the quarterback took a hard hit to the helmet, appeared woozy on the field, stayed in for a play and then was brought back into the game for another play later on in the game.
UM students, who had been displeased with student ticket prices and other issues, held a protest demanding that Brandon be fired soon after the incident.
Earlier this week, Stephen Ross – Michigan’s biggest donor – told the Wall Street Journal that he would not interfere with any decision involving Brandon’s job status. On Tuesday, MGoBlog, a popular Michigan sports blog, published several email exchanges between Brandon and fans. Among the testy exchanges included Brandon allegedly telling a fan: “I suggest you find a new team to support. We will be fine without you. Have a happy life.”
Brandon, a Michigan alum and former football player, was hired in January 2010.
For more Michigan news, visit TheWolverine.com.
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