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WSU’s Kirk Schulz not interested in replacing Mark Emmert as NCAA president

UPDATED: Wed., April 27, 2022

Washington State University President Kirk Schulz worked with the group responsible for identifying the Pac-12 Conference’s new commissioner, George Kliavkoff.  (Libby Kamrowski / The Spokesman-Review)
Washington State University President Kirk Schulz worked with the group responsible for identifying the Pac-12 Conference’s new commissioner, George Kliavkoff. (Libby Kamrowski / The Spokesman-Review)

Who will replace Mark Emmert as president of the NCAA?

Whoever it is, it probably won’t be Washington State University President Kirk Schulz.

Schulz was floated as a potential candidate by a few national media outlets, including the Athletic.

In an article published Tuesday that references the feelings of “industry sources,” the Athletic listed Schulz, along with former Secretary of State (now director of Stanford University’s Hoover Institute) Condoleezza Rice, Green Bay Packers President and CEO Mark Murphy and seven other people on a list of possible candidates for the post.

Emmert and NCAA’s Board of Governors on Tuesday announced plans to step down by June 2023 or sooner if his replacement is found by then, according to ESPN.

Shooting down the speculation, Schulz said in a statement Wednesday he remains “fully committed” to his position at WSU.

“I am not interested in being considered as the next NCAA president,” he wrote. “My support will continue to be with Mark Emmert as he finishes his time with the NCAA and I look forward to working with his eventual successor.

“Go Cougs!”

The Athletic article stated administrators who have worked with Schulz “rave about his ability to win over rooms of all sectors.”

In another article by the Athletic, Schulz was also considered a possible candidate to replace Bob Bowlsby as commissioner of the Big 12 Conference. That article – penned by Matt Fortuna, one of the listed authors on Tuesday’s NCAA piece – was published just more than a week ago, April 19.

“If he has higher aspirations, then NCAA president might be the gig for him,” Tuesday’s article reads, “as he has served as president at Kansas State and now Washington State, and he has led commissioner searches for both the Big 12 and Pac-12.”

Noel Schulz, Kirk Schulz’ wife, reiterated in a tweet Wednesday she and her husband are staying at WSU.

“WSU >> NCAA or BIG 12! We’re not done yet Cougs!” she wrote. “Kirk & I are focused on the @WSU system and we need all the #Cougfamily on board to help.”

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