Interim athletic director ready for challenges
Budget cuts are the top issue for interim athletic director
Don’t ask Jerry Koloskie about his weaknesses. He doesn’t believe in thinking about them.
But he does believe in Mike Sanford.
Koloskie was recently named Interim Athletic Director in August after the former A.D. Mike Hamrick decided to leave. He spoke to students at a press conference Tuesday.
Even though Sanford has posted five losing seasons in five years as the coach of the UNLV football team, Koloskie doesn’t think there will be any change of coaches at the end of the season.
“We have a very good football coach and I am very confident that we are going to have a successful season and we can move forward,” Koloskie said.
Koloskie also defended Sanford’s character and the plan that Sanford had when he came to the university in 2004, to develop the program around freshmen.
“We have a lot of players this year that have earned experience through this system — guys that have been here and are used to it,” he said. “And you will see a lot of good things this year with this football team.”
With last week’s win over Sacramento State and Saturday’s impressive display — almost upsetting Oregon State — Koloskie’s prediction could be a reality.
But he is no stranger to the internal working of the program.
Koloskie began his career at UNLV 26 years ago as head athletic trainer for the men’s basketball team and has worked his way up the ranks.
After accepting duties as athletic director, he took the reigns to improve UNLV’s sports in a time of economic downturn.
“We are talking about budget cuts from $400,000 to $600,000,” Koloskie explained.
There is a $2,000,000 reserve budget set aside that Koloskie can work with during his tenure as A.D. He anticipates spending a good percentage of that this year.
Some ideas Koloskie discussed to help with cost containment include eliminating administration and third assistants and requiring same-day travel for teams as opposed to leaving a day prior to matches, to save on hotel costs.
In an effort to raise funds, UNLV Athletics have already scheduled an extra football game next season against West Virginia that is projected to produce an extra $740,000.
Koloskie also wants to focus on improving the program through communication, utilizing social media Web sites to promote UNLV games.
His main priority is to provide student-athletes and coaches with the resources to be successful on the field and in the classroom.
Koloskie’s gig as interim A.D. finishes in spring and whether he will get the permanent position is undetermined. Whether Koloskie is chosen for the job or not, he insists that he wants to stay at UNLV.
“It’s an honor for me to do this right now,” he said. “I’ll be here as long as they want me to be here. I don’t want to go anywhere. I love Las Vegas… and I hope I’ll be given the opportunity to stay.”