Missouri is in dire need of stable leadership in the athletics department. The Tigers lost athletic director Mack Rhoades two weeks ago, and the man who replaced him in an interim role — Wren Baker — is already on his way out the door, too.
That leaves Missouri in a rough situation (what else is new?), with some fans calling for former athletic director Mike Alden to take the interim role in Baker’s wake.
Alden, who served from 1998-2015, left his post last year to take a hybrid job as instructor and jack-of-all-trades in the university’s College of Education.
Thursday, he spoke with TheManeater.com’s Alec Lewis about the open position at his school:
It’s flattering when people [mention your name in part of these things]. You know, maybe we had done quite a few things in a positive way, but for me, my focus is what we’re trying to do in the college of education and with international engagement. However, any opportunity that I get, if someone has some questions or I can be of assistance, I’m always there for them. Mizzou knows that we love the institution, so I try to be as supportive as I can in whatever way I can.
Alden’s departure from the athletic department led Missouri to hire Rhoades, who endured the most tumultuous sports calendar in recent Mizzou memory.
The football team briefly boycotted activities in autumn, the basketball team announced harsh self-penalties in winter, and the softball team played several games in official protest of Rhoades’ administration; All this while the university saw its president and chancellor forced out the door.
While Alden appears to be unwilling to consider a return to the athletic department, he did offer some advice to the search committee.
He told Lewis Missouri needs a man or woman who is active in the community, a good leader and “truly wants to be at Mizzou.”
“This is a destination spot,” he said. “It really is. It’s an SEC job, a great institution, a great job and everything in the state of Missouri centers around Mizzou, so those three things are critical.”