athletic director Dave Joyner is set to retire from his role in August. (Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
Penn State athletic director Dave Joyner will retire from the university on Aug. 1, the school announced on Tuesday. Joyner's departure was first reported by David Jones of PennLive.com.
Joyner was named athletic director in Nov. 2011, when he replaced Tim Curley in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal. Joyner hired Bill O'Brien to replace Joe Paterno as head football coach, and Joyner also hired James Franklin this past January after O'Brien left to take over the NFL's Houston Texans.
In a statement, Penn State president Eric J. Barron thanked Joyner for his service to the university.
"Dave Joyner has provided steady leadership to Athletics for nearly three years," Barron said. "I want to thank him for his hard work in upholding Penn State's legacy of academic and athletic success."
Joyner is set to assist with the transition in the school's search for a new athletic director. He said he will remember his time at Penn State fondly.
"It has been an honor and privilege to serve Penn State," Joyner said. "Our student athletes, coaches, staff and the University community were a daily source of inspiration for me. The spirit of Penn State is strong, and the department's commitment to integrity, as well as academic and athletic excellence is stronger than ever."
According to Jones, Joyner's management style likely ruffled some feathers within the Penn State athletic department.
It would probably not be accurate to say Joyner had a lot of fans among the school's 31 varsity sport coaches. Then again, the relationship is often strained between bean-counting athletics directors and hot-blooded coaches in most high-major college athletic programs. The paradox of coaches is that they are leaders but they also want to be led – or at least communicated with. In that vein, Joyner could be judged less than ideal as an AD.
And among those who revered the late former football coach Joe Paterno, he will always be painted soot black as one of the trustees who voted to fire him in the Sandusky maelstrom's immediate wake. Their zealous stance is, of course, intractable by any means.