November 26, 2015

Eric Hyman to Ray Tanner: Being an AD is different than coaching (AUDIO)

Ray Tanner isn’t getting a ringing endorsement from his old boss

Outgoing USC Director Eric Hyman says just because Ray Tanner is a great college baseball coach doesn’t mean he will make a great athletic director.  Since Hyman stepped down just over a week ago there has been growing support for Tanner to replace him as the CEO of Gamecock athletics.  Hyman isn’t sure that is a great idea. 

“I think he is one of the best, if not the best coach I have ever been associated with,” Hyman said on SportsTalk Monday night. “Being an athletic director is different. And I would say this to Ray, I would say this to anybody. ”

Since taking over in 1997 Tanner has led the USC baseball team to the College World Series six times and has won two of the past three national championships. But in Hyman’s eyes knowing when to pinch hit or pull a pitcher doesn’t mean you are capable of running a multimillion dollar athletic department.

“Being an athletic director is a very complicated complex job with a lot of moving parts and whereas in baseball there is more black and white. As a coach there is more black and white and as an administrator you have a lot more gray so you really got to be able to change you mindset a little bit and be able to adapt and adjust to it. It is not as rigid as a coach and sometimes people have a difficult time making that transition from a coaching profession to the administration.”

Hyman said it isn’t his call, but if it were up to him he would suggest USC conduct a national search for a new athletic director. 

“The university needs to do, what the university wants to do as far as the next athletic director. They know better. It is not my position to be involved in that. They need to decide what they think is in best interest of the school and if Ray’s it, he is certainty capable. He is a very,very talented baseball coach and he’s got talent and it is going to be a learning curve for him and so what he needs to do is have a strong staff to be able to support him and assist.”

Hyman and Tanner have a history that dates back to their time together at N.C. State.  It hasn’t been a secret that the two didn’t always see eye to eye on things, but their relationship has always been professional at USC.  Hyman will remain on the USC payroll until the end of July.

Check out the full interview below:

 AUDIO: Eric Hyman SportsTalk interview [13:17]



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  1. OT Hudso says:

    Hyman needs to stay out of the new AD search … he has made his choice to leave and so be it!

    The University will make a HUGE mistake if they do not allow Ray Tanner a shot at this job if he wants it. He will make a great ambassador for the university and, with capable assistants, he will certainly do better at managing funds, as well as maintaining goodwill amongst supporters, than Hyman and his “right arm” have done! Furthermore, the baseball team will be in excellent hands with Chad Holbrook. I say go ahead and seal the deal as soon as possible and let’s move forward.

  2. Brian Petit says:

    I don’t think Eric Hyman ever learned all the subtleties and nuances of being the point man for an SEC athletic department. He did some good things but his handling of the Darin Horn and Stephen Garcia debacles certainly was ham-handed to say the least. Ray Tanner will have a learning curve but
    he will excel because he does things the right way. He appears to be without guile, I never got the same impression of Hyman. Maybe it was that Sportstalk interview with Phil Kornblut where Hyman asks Phil to edit a remark he just made and then spews platitudes. I’m not sure if it was intentional but you guys posted the unsanitized version and the more politically correct version.

  3. Lynn Welch says:

    I think Hyman suffers from Dabo-itis. He (Hyman) doesn’t know when to stop talking. If Ray Tanner wants the job, he deserves it. He has taken Gamecock pride to a whole new level.

  4. I agree with the two previous comments completely.

    Hyman lost his opinion privileges the moment he took the A&M job, and Ray Tanner deserves the shot. He has Asst AD experience, a winning attitude and the respect of Gamecock Nation.

  5. King Ward says:

    It’s ridiculous to say that Tanner deserves to be AD because he can coach baseball. It’s stupid.