After Athletic Director John Eason submitted his letter of resignation to FAMU President Larry Robinson on Oct. 20, Eason remained on the job and Robinson remained silent on the matter.
In a statement, Eason, who had been on the job less than two years, revealed that he had grave budget concerns and that there were a lot of things taking place behind the scenes.
The beleaguered department has a hiring freeze and is working to avoid another annual deficit in excess of $1 million. Earlier this month FAMU announced that it will be eliminated two men’s athletic programs, cross country and tennis.
“I was concerned about the budget and what was going on. The president and I agreed to talk. I don’t like to let things sit. There are a lot of things people don’t see that go into this job,” Eason said last month.
Now, nearly a month later, FAMU announced at a Saturday fundraising breakfast in Orlando that Kortne Gosha will be taking over as the vice president and director of athletics, effective Dec. 2.
Gosha, an assistant athletic director at the University of Miami, previously served as the assistant dthletic director at Middle Tennessee State University.
Gosha, 31, is the youngest athletic director to ever hold the position at FAMU.
According to the Tallahassee Democrat, Gosha’s contract is for three years with a two-year option. He has incentives tied to his deal based on performance.
The specifics of his annual salary has yet to be announced, but the FAMU Board of Trustees are scheduled to discuss it in detail during a Dec. 4 meeting.
His projected annual salary is $300,000.
Eddie Jackson, president of the 220 Quarterback Club, a local organization that supports FAMU athletics, believes Robinson has made a promising hire. “The more I study his background, the better he looks. He’s young but very impressive in person and appears to have great interpersonal skills. He also realizes that fund raising is at the top of his priority list,” Jackson said.
While some are thrilled with the announcement, others are wondering if FAMU made the best decision or simply a convenient one. The athletic director position was never advertised and a search committee was never formed.
Rashad Ingram, a FAMU alum and supporter of FAMU football, believes that the decision was made too soon and worries that Gosha is not experienced enough at age 31.
“If people keep resigning there’s clearly an issue,” said Ingram. “I think he’s a bit young for such a responsibility and from what I’ve been hearing, he has a lot to fix.”
However, FAMU wide receivers coach Jelani Berassa said he has a strong faith that the university made a great decision and he’s excited to see what the new athletic director has in store.
“I trust that Gosha knows what he’s doing. There’s a lot of talk, of course, but people just have to wait and see,” Berassa said. “I’m confident that he will do his job well. “
In a statement Gosha said that he is excited to start his new journey and assured those at Saturday morning’s breakfast that this will be the most promising adventure that FAMU has seen yet.
“I’m excited about this opportunity,” Gosha said. “This next chapter of FAMU athletics will be our best chapter. We are ready and building champions at FAMU.”