LSU AD Joe Alleva Turns Down Tennessee

By: Kim Allen Email
By: Kim Allen Email

Joe Alleva is taking Baton Rouge over Knoxville. Alleva has turned down an offer to become Tennessee's new Athletic Director.

LSU's current AD chose not to replace Mike Hamilton, who resigned earlier this year. "This is not an opportunity that I pursued, and Tennessee is a wonderful place, but in the end I felt that Chancellor (Michael) Martin has a great vision for LSU," Alleva said in a statement released by the university on Tuesday. "He and the Board of Supervisors .... showed tremendous support.

Alleva will reportedly receive a new contract and a raise to remain with the Tigers. His current deal, which was just extended, runs through 2016 and carries a $550,000 annual salary.

Alleva has been LSU's athletic director since April 2008, when ended a 10-year stint with the same job at Duke. Tennessee interim vice chancellor and athletic director Joan Cronan declined to discuss Alleva's candidacy, saying only that the university's search "is still in progress."

The next Tennessee athletic director will replace Hamilton, who announced June 7 that was stepping down. Hamilton was under pressure after a 26-month NCAA investigation and multiple coaching turnovers.

Alleva helped LSU retain Les Miles last winter while he was being courted by Michigan. He also lured former UCLA head women's basketball coach Nikki Caldwell to LSU in April, shortly after the resignation of Hall of Fame coach Van Chancellor.

Meanwhile, Alleva has overseen a compliance department that was recently praised by the NCAA for its work to uncover and report improper housing and transportation benefits that a former assistant football coach arranged for a former player.

Last week, NCAA officials cited LSU's aggressive approach to investigating itself when deciding on a relatively light punishment that left the Tigers with a full complement of scholarships in future seasons and the ability to participate in the postseason.

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