What will a new president mean for Tech athletics?

Good morning, all. Hope you’re finding the new location okay. Thanks for your patience as we work out some bugs.

You likely know that Tech has a new president, G.P. “Bud” Peterson. You may be interested to know that he walked on to the Kansas State football team and eventually earned a scholarship as a wide receiver. So, I think we can deduce that, while he was a research scientist for NASA at one point, he isn’t a pointy head who’s going to steer clear of Bobby Dodd Stadium.
So, what will his role be with the athletics department?
From his tenure at Colorado, it isn’t easy to deduce how he’ll approach the athletics department at Tech, because the one he inherited at Colorado was nothing like the one run by Dan Radakovich.
When Peterson was hired as chancellor in July 2006, the school was reeling from a sex scandal with the football team. The team was accused of using alcohol and sex to lure recruits. Two women had sued the school, alleging they were raped at a 2001 party by Colorado football players and high school recruits. In 2007, six years after the incident, two women received $2.85 million from the university in a settlement.
As a result of that incident and other problems with the department, Peterson brought the department more into the fold of the rest of the university.
The athletic department “does not exist in and of itself,” Peterson told the Denver Post in 2006. “It has historically functioned somewhat apart.”
In the same story, illustrating the increased control that the university had over the athletics department, it gave the example that athletics director Mike Bohn had to run a budget item — $11,000 computer software for breaking down football game film — past the school’s senior vice chancellor for budget and finance, with whom the AD met monthly.
As I said, Tech’s athletics department is hardly the sort of operation desperate for oversight, as Colorado’s evidently was at the time.
But, this is what caught my attention. Before the 2006-07 basketball season began, then-coach Ricardo Patton announced that that season would be his last. It was the 11th full season for Patton, who had one of the most successful tenures in the school’s rather meager basketball history. It sounds like it was a fairly stable team, and not an area that needed the imprint of, say, the university chancellor.
But Peterson was on the search committee to hire Patton’s replacement, and once then-Air Force Academy coach Jeff Bzdelik was identified, he helped Bohn recruit him to Boulder.
(If you’re wondering, Colorado is 21-38 in two seasons under Bzdelik.)
By comparison, when Radakovich hired Paul Johnson, the search committee was associate AD Wayne Hogan, Dan Parker of the Parker Executive Search Firm and Radakovich. Then-president Wayne Clough was involved – he interviewed Johnson – but Radakovich led the way.
Granted, it’s a snapshot from three years, and this isn’t apples to apples. But, I just wanted to throw this out there and ask what you think.
If Peterson is involved in athletics, what do you think about it, and in what way would you want to see him participate?

42 comments Add your comment

Michael Carvell

February 26th, 2009
3:11 am

First!!! lol


February 26th, 2009
4:14 am

Seriously Carvell? lol? Are you twleve? Don’t you have a hot interview with that second grader out of Parkview with mad skillz this morning? You’re so excited you can’t sleep, eh?



February 26th, 2009
4:17 am

Stupid new blog cut me off…

Interesting article. Maybe Prez “Bud” can do a better job finding GT a new BB coach.


February 26th, 2009
6:31 am

I always thought Gary Barnett was a disgrace to the coaching profession after what he said, and the ignorant stance he took “shes only a kicker…”
Everytime i see him on tv i wonder why?

Hopefully this new pres will FORCE Hewitt to get new assistants!! I think after this happens, GT hoops will return to being highly competitive…… next year hopefully will be the start of something good!


February 26th, 2009
8:32 am

The Tech BB team is in trouble. They are several years removed from any real success. They have had several one and done player and seem to have another one coming up the ranks. We are not going to get anywhere recruiting one and dones. You can’t build any continuity. I thought that was the ultimate demise of CBC…I mean look how well Marbury is working out in the NBA…a real Banner Carrier. As for the New Prez. I just hope he keeps his nose out of things.


February 26th, 2009
8:51 am

Personally, I hope the President pays attention to more important things – like the Institute, and lets DRad run the Athletics Department.


February 26th, 2009
8:57 am

Georgia Tech fans who keep complaining about Hewitt….what are you complaining about..what do you want the man to do haha? Ok Hewitt we want you to stop getting the top recruits and go for the lower class guys who will stay in college but can’t compete…YEAH great idea!!
Its not his fault that he brings in good players who leave after one year, I mean he has brought in GREAT point guards but when they leave after one season we go into things as if we have no quarterback…stop complaining.


February 26th, 2009
9:14 am

Until circumstances warrant otherwise, Peterson’s role should be to ensure that the athletic program reflects the same degree of excellence and character as the rest of the institute. His primary conduit to accomplish that goal is DRad. So long as DRad continues to deliver on that front, Peterson (like any good leader) ought not be micromanaging the GTAA.

BB Season ticket holder for 25 years

February 26th, 2009
9:28 am

Well said, MinnesotaJacket. Paul Hewitt is a quality person, coach, recruiter, etc. We are lucky to have him and should support him in every way. My hat goes off to DRad for his support of Hewitt. I for one am thankful he is in charge and not the fans.


February 26th, 2009
9:51 am

I dunno. I think the board of Regents did an excellent job finding a President, i.e. he knows how important high-profile research is, he’s excellently qualified academically, etc. But I Tech also had building another Dodd-esque dynasty on its mind when they hired him (we certainly have the coach for it). They wanted a man that knows how important not only academics, but athletics, can be to a university’s morale. G.P. “Burdell” Peterson, as a player and as a university pres, knows the ins and outs of dealing with boosters, alumni, etc, and that knowledge will translate into more funding for the program and hopefully a new era in Tech football. He certainly knows how to bring a program out of bad press and back to at the very least, decency. As for BBall, give CPH some time, I have confidence in him that he can work things out.


February 26th, 2009
10:05 am

Minnesota and Season Ticket Holder you two must be watching some team other than ours. Hewitt is a terrible coach and is responsible for all things with the program including one and dones. Coaches generally know in advance if a kid might be good enough to do that. The best thing the new president can do is to press the AD to fire Hewitt. He has ruined our program.


February 26th, 2009
10:29 am

I think Techsters ought to be less concerned of the new prexy’s involvement in sports and more concerned that he is bolting Colorado after only three years. He should at least have had the loyalty to let the ball stop rolling.

fred preddy

February 26th, 2009
10:29 am

The President should build on the traditions/values we have…and, only then, reach out for more. “Dance with them that brung ya”.
Stay within our highly respected niche…don’t be pulled off-focus with “new Coke”, music, poetry—exploit our MANY strengths—listen to DRad!!!

Alabama Jack

February 26th, 2009
10:36 am

In response to sharecropper, I got the impression he had gone a long way toward accomplishing his goals in Colorado, and hey, how do you pass up any opportunity like Georgia Tech.


February 26th, 2009
10:46 am

Minnesota and Season Ticket Holder, I’m in Sales and I want to come work your either one of you. Obviously, results do not matter.

GT66 hit the nail on the head.


February 26th, 2009
10:50 am

I hope the new school president is as motivated as he was in his last post to find another new basketball coach pronto.


February 26th, 2009
11:31 am

My point isn’t about that though…his coaching can’t be blamed for losing what 5 FIRST ROUND draft choices for the NBA…I mean what do you want the man to do about that is what I am saying how is he supposed to know when he is recruiting whether or not a kid will stay or not? You can’t coach very well when your changing your LEADER the POINT GUARD every year, and going from top notch to a kid he recruited as backup. Yes results aren’t their but if you bring in another coach first of all recruiting drops so that hurts the team, second of all he has to bring a new system to a team that ALL READY has a hard time learning the system.
My point is I want you to take any coach for any college team and every year give him great recruits but take away your top leading scorers every year with one of them ALWAYS being the point guard and tell him to go win….

Ramblin Wrecker

February 26th, 2009
11:31 am

Hey, if UGA doesn’t want Bobby Knight, I’d take him at GT. If you don’t want one and dones on your basketball team, or guys who can’t work hard, then that would immediately keep them away. Knight would bring in kids who work hard on the court and in the classroom, which is a perfect match for a school like GT. Plus he’d give the program national credibility and exposure, sure some of it would be bad, but since when is having a foul mouth and saying what you think a crime?

GT Student

February 26th, 2009
12:03 pm

I think you guys forget that we are shooting with the worst percentage in the ACC. PH doesn’t shoot, he draws up the plays which are often open. He can’t make the layups himself.

“If we don’t make it to the NCAAs next year, he will get fired…” is the word I am hearing from the insiders I know at the AA who often speak with the alums associated with paying him.


February 26th, 2009
2:01 pm

MinnesotaJacket, Mo Miller was our pt. guard last year, he’s gotten worse.

99% of the coaches with just one 1st round NBA pick will take that team to the big dance. Make all the excuses you want but we can’t hurt the team anymore than the PROGRAM is hurting right now.

He is a terrible coach or he has other priorities (BCA President) he feels are more important or let get in the way of his 1.3 million dollar job.

The new GT President should let DRAD run the show. DRAD would have fired Hewitt last year, if it wasn’t for this horrific contract.

As far as I’m concerned with Hewitt, if he’s back next year, he’s going to have to do a whole lot better than making it to the big dance to keep his job with this class. I’d say Elite Eight.

GROUND HOG DAY has us making it to the big dance next year and getting eliminated 1st round by a much weaker team.


February 26th, 2009
2:05 pm

MinnesotaJacket, you are absolutely refusing to look at the fact that Hewitt consistently loses to lesser teams, his teams always play poor fundamental BB, his teams never seem to get better over the year, and his players seldom improve from year to year. Sure, he can recruit, but he can’t coach them after he gets them! There are good high school teams in Georgia that are better coached.


February 26th, 2009
2:11 pm

minnesota-its his responsibility to have a point guard year after year. its also his responsibility to know that he’s going to lose players. its college bball there is going to be constant attrition. why is duke and north carolina so good every year? they get good to decent players and coach them up. not superstar primadonnas that bail to the NBA. paul hewitt is getting good recruits but not doing anything with them.
minnesota-you probably wanted to keep chan around too. he’s lucky he has that contract but if CPH doesn’t perform next year…off with his head. he’ll have a point guard and a beast in Favors, hopefully Gani Lawal will stick around. maybe it will be a special season and paul will be able to stick around. we’ll see…..

Ken Sugiura

February 26th, 2009
2:50 pm

thanks, all, for your comments. Somehow, I figured the discussion would eventually end up here.
I’ll ask this – speaking purely hypothetically, would you want Peterson to be on the search committee for a football or basketball coach?


February 26th, 2009
3:03 pm

IF No changes are made on the coaching staff… i predict well be .500 in the ACC and a 7-8 seed in the NCAA Tourney. Where well be bounced out within the first 2 rounds.

BUT if Hewitt swallows his pride, and gets some assistants that are good enough to coach in the ACC against some of the other top coaches in the land…. then we can be a Final 4 team!


February 26th, 2009
3:18 pm

MinnesotaJacket, you need to wake up! What has he done with all those talents? We had a future bonafide all star in Bosh and that team didn’t even make it to the tourney. In 06-07, they had 4 players now on NBA rosters. Do you know what happened? They lost in 1st round. Two other teams had 3 or more players who are playing in NBA. They met in the final. He just got extremely lucky in one year then this jackas s of AD at the time gave him a ridiculous contract extention. I almost wish Tech would do horrible next year so he gets fired. If the team somehow makes a deep run in the tourney, people will think he’s somehow good.
And what’s with losing a PG every year? Crittenton is only one and doner among Tech PGs under Hewitt.


February 26th, 2009
3:25 pm

Hey, BravesFan79: At this point I’d be thrilled with a .500 record in the ACC and a second round bounce from the big dance. But, if we have no point guard or shooters, then we’ll have trouble winning with Wilt Chamberlain as a “one and doner”.


February 26th, 2009
3:58 pm

Who was on the search committe to find Bud Peterson. There is your answer

Mike T.

February 26th, 2009
4:10 pm

42-45 A Fluke


February 26th, 2009
5:20 pm

Depends on the money. If Tech athletics is rolling in the dough the new prez will want some of it for academics. If it is not, he will want to know why not.


February 26th, 2009
5:34 pm

Paul Hewitt is the cause of global warming, cancer, high unemployment rates, war, and famine.

Get a grip. All of the blame doesn’t fall on Hewitt. It falls on him, his staff, and his players. They’re all in it together.

Can we for once have a GT blog that doesn’t end up a “Fire Hewitt” forum? There are other things going on at GT. New Pres… baseball season… football spring practice. Lots to talk about.

I don’t think the new Pres. should be that involved in Athletics. D-Rad is doing a fine job. Peterson just needs to make sure coaches represent the Institute well (which Paul Hewitt does). He shouldn’t have a say in talent evaluation of coaches, or whatever.

He should focus on shooting us up those academic rankings, not athletic rankings. Let Radakovich do his thing.

I want a never ending contracttoo...

February 26th, 2009
6:13 pm

Wonder if the new prez has a never ending contract.

And, is he jealous of CPHs?

some sense

February 26th, 2009
6:19 pm

First time I’ve read the Tech(mites) BLOG.

Even more whacko’s here than on UGA’s.

Ken, what’s the use of runnin’ these things if this is what you’re gonna get???


February 26th, 2009
6:31 pm

Getting rid of Wayne “Klutz” and his sidekick Dave “Braindamage” was the best thing to happen to Tech in tha last century. Wayne should be horse whipped for letting Braine break one off in Tech before leaving by locking Tech into long term rollover contracts on both Gailey and Hewitt before he walked out. This move was to get back at alumni that wanted him gone for years, and Clough let him do it! No “Lame Duck” athletic director should be allowed to make such major moves. It was done as Dan R. was coming into office! Then Wayne promptly went to Washington where he had been campaigning for a job for the last 10 years! A typical government puke! Good ridence, and welcome anybody with athletic experience and insight!


February 26th, 2009
7:26 pm

Ken, NO, the prez should not be involved in the hiring of any member of the athletic staff, other than some kind of nominal final approval. He SHOULD have better things to do as prez than sticking his nose into athletics. At the same time, however, I would hope that he, from the start, indicates strong support for DRad and the overall athletic program at Tech.
Regarding CPH, I would have to ask all those who support him how it is that other schools win national championships WITHOUT one-and-done superstars, and we can’t even have a winning record WITH them? Stop recruiting kids that you know are not going to stick around, and who will only be playing to up their stakes, not necessarily to better the team. Go for kids who have the promise of being part of a team.

chuck allison

February 26th, 2009
7:50 pm

There is one thing that Paul Hewitt fails to do perenially. He fails to produce winning seasons in the ACC. He also fails to develop his players and he resorts to recruiting one and done players who fail to help our program long term. We should not scapegoat the assistant coaches; all they need is a competent boss. The assistants are NOT the problem here.


February 26th, 2009
9:09 pm

Hewitt is a great recruiter, but a horrible coach. Get rid of him. We have seen the same thing over and over for years…excuses…and poor fundamentals…that is a poor coach (who happens to be a great recruiter). The definition of insanity is thinking something better or different will happen, keeping Hewitt. The reality is he is only here because the RETARD DAVID BRAINLESS gave him a golden contract that cannot be broken by a small school with limited funds. There is no other reason, other than maybe political pressure because he is a protected class. NO reason is based on him being a good coach though. We are keeping him for all the WRONG reasons.


February 26th, 2009
9:13 pm

Clearly anyone who supports Hewitt has NOT been paying attention for very long, or doesn’t have a clue about fundamentals. You can use the same excuses for a year or two…but not five or six…this is just insane…the man is NOT a good coach. Great recruiter, yes…horrible coach. Give me a GREAT coach and so-so recruiter, and I’ll show you someone the GT faithful can get behind. We like SMART basketball…which means SOUND fundamentals…we haven’t seen it in MANY years. That has nothing to do with early NBA departures. It has everything to do with the head coach (who picks players and assistance…thus is the end all for the blame after this many years of the same BS).


February 26th, 2009
9:16 pm

Ken Sugiura, it always ends here, because except for a TINY minority of blogers, we all have the same exact opinion of Hewitt. You would think the VAST majority of us being consistent with this would mean something. How about a little help? We need our coach shamed into quiting, since he is stealing from the AA with that INSANE contract that was clearly given for all the wrong reasons. It should be a crime to allow that contract to stand.


February 26th, 2009
10:52 pm

I’m a GT alum and a huge supporter of the teams, but people on here need to get their priorities in order. The job of an university (or institute) president is to make the university better, not to worry about the sports teams. Seriously, you people sound like dawg fans. As much as I love GT football and basketball, the world doesn’t revolve around your hate for Paul Hewitt. And that’s from someone who thinks that he’s a horrible coach.


February 27th, 2009
12:03 am

haha wow chuck you must know the whole system inside and out by your comment…How do you know the assistants aren’t needed or are?? I mean I confess that I do not know..But I’m not gonna voice a negative opinion with no proof!

I think Paul Hewit runs an offense that is not suited for the talent he has..(Which is not his fault) he has done a great job recruiting..The problem is he hasn’t done a very good job adapting to all these freshman leaving early..Like I said, the squad that he has is decent in the post but needs an experienced point gaurd and more depth with the gaurds. Paul needs to adjust to this problem and run different things..I think they need to do more post screens and a different kind of motion offense that spaces the floor better..(just an my take)

All in all…GO JACKETS

panama city beach mike

February 27th, 2009
1:48 am

Paul Hewitt is a class guy who took us to the championship game, which was great. But this is also the same guy who has taken us to the bottom of basketball today. Remember Bosh, one of the best high school players in the nation and a great pro. His one and done didn’t do much for Tech, and neither will Favors. And to say that it is not Hewitt’s fault that players leave early, well that is part of college basketball. I pay for extra channels so I can get Tech basketball games. I cancelled my sports package in early January, I just couldn’t watch our team play that poorly. Best wishes to Coach Hewitt in the future, but I hope starting next season, he is not our coach.


February 27th, 2009
9:53 am

Being a good person is never an adequate reason to keep a coach. I’m a hell of a guy and I know quite a few bright honest people. But I wouldn’t hire myself or my friends at a million bucks to coach a major college program because we do not have the skills. Hewitt has good recruiting skills, but can’t put together a cohesive game plan, so the good athletes play BELOW there potential as a team and lose. Everyone has problems with kids playing a year and leaving, Hewitt is competing against other schools who play be the same rules and loses. Hewitt may be the most honest, nice wonderful, giving person on the planet. Fire Hewitt because he loses.