Smatresk still deliberating in search for UNLV AD

UNLV’s search for a new athletic director continued Wednesday, with school president Neal Smatresk saying he was still gathering information and examining contract issues.

The university notified the media early in the afternoon that no contract offer had been made and no developments were expected until at least today. In a text message to the Las Vegas Review-Journal on Wednesday night, Smatresk said he was "getting there."

The interview process concluded Tuesday with a visit from the last of the three finalists for the position, Arizona AD Jim Livengood. The other finalists are Washington State senior associate athletic director John Johnson and former Oregon and Montana AD Bill Moos.

Livengood said he hadn’t heard any news Wednesday morning, and later attempts to reach him were unsuccessful. Moos said he had no news to report Wednesday night, and attempts to reach Johnson were unsuccessful.

It has been a lengthy hiring process. Mike Hamrick was hired in July as athletic director at his alma mater, Marshall. UNLV wanted to wait until after the new year to begin the search for its next AD, putting Jerry Koloskie in charge on an interim basis.

When the Rebels’ continuing struggles in football necessitated the firing of coach Mike Sanford, Smatresk moved up the start of the search process. The AD job was posted Nov. 4, with a Nov. 30 deadline for priority applications.

Smatresk wants to be sure to choose the right person, of course, as this hire could define his presidency. But waiting too long could hurt UNLV’s effort to find a quality football coach before recruiting season gets too far along.

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at or 702-387-2914.


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