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Q/A with FSU AD Randy Spetman

Randy Spetman smiles after being named Director of Athletics at FSU on Feb. 4.

AP photo

Randy Spetman smiles after being named Director of Athletics at FSU on Feb. 4.

TALLAHASSEE — Florida State athletic director Randy Spetman has been on the job for about two months, although you wouldn't know it glancing around his office. There wasn't a book on the shelves and very little on the walls.

But what was on display tells you quite a bit about Spetman's guiding principles. There's a picture of his family on the credenza behind his desk. There's a picture from his senior season of football at the Air Force Academy. There's the flight helmet he received as commander of the 23rd bomb squadron stationed in North Dakota, and his military ribbons and medals in a frame.

Perhaps most revealing is his father's World War II flying jacket. Ed Spetman was a radio operator/gunner on a B-24 bomber that "chased Rommel around" north Africa, the son said with pride.

"Tom Brokaw called them the greatest (generation) of Americans, and I have always hung that (jacket) in my office to remind me of what they did," he said.

Trust us. He will add more personal touches. He joked that he has two boxes of books in the back of his car that he hasn't had the time to haul into the Moore Athletic Center. He has been busy with other matters, as he recently discussed with the Times.

What has been Job 1 since you came here from Utah State?

Meeting the academic community and meeting the students and the coaches and the athletes. With our academic scandal, my No. 1 priority is to help get us going to get beyond that so that we have credibility with the faculty and have integration with academics and athletics, so people are very proud of Florida State again and what we're doing with our program. … We've got some pretty stringent rules; if you don't go to class, you don't play. We're enforcing that. I think it's going to be very healthy for us.

Any update on the scandal?

The NCAA came back last week and finished up their interviews, or re-interviewed some people. We're waiting for their formal report to come back. That's when we should have an indication of what we should start doing. But they have up to six months to give us that report back, from what I understand.

How many scholarships will be lost; the self report was vague?

We don't know. We haven't gone to the infractions committee … and won't before October, November or January of '09. In the sports involved, we'll be penalized some number in proportionality (to the already agreed upon suspension for those involved, 30 percent of their seasons; for football, that's four games).

The NCAA could accept that suggested penalty or increase or even decrease it, so when do you implement a loss in scholarships?

We've told all of our coaches who (had players) involved in the scandal, "Start looking and see how you're going to do this and make it work, even for next year.''

Coach Bobby Bowden is pushing hard for an indoor practice facility. What's your take?

Until I came here in February, I never even thought about an indoor facility until I saw what the weather does and how fast it moves through. I think it would be really beneficial for the whole university, not just football.

How so?

If we had weather, softball could be on one side, baseball could be on the other side and we don't lose any practice (for either). They're out of there and then football or soccer's in there. The other thing is if we have a track in there, track can use it. We could host, possibly, based on the size of the facility, an indoor championship, the ACC championship. At Air Force, we had an indoor facility and we hosted the Mountain West championship every year. Another part of it is it allows our physical education department to teach classes in there. It would help them with their programming. It would give our students an indoor facility if they want to run at night.

You've been putting together your senior staff, but you now have to make your first coaching hire — volleyball. What happened there?

Todd Kress has done a good job. But I'll be honest, when I studied the program before I came here, I kind of had the feeling that was the one program that wasn't performing to the level the rest of them were. I sensed that and coming in here and receiving a lot of other information and research on it, nothing against him, I just didn't think there was the right chemistry. I think we ought to be the leaders in the ACC in volleyball with our resources.

Have you had the chance to sit down with men's basketball coach Leonard Hamilton?

We haven't … I like what he's doing. Obviously, he was snake bit this year with injuries. But I'm excited to work with him and help him be successful.

Q/A with FSU AD Randy Spetman 04/16/08 [Last modified: Thursday, April 17, 2008 5:13pm]
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