Highlights from UH AD Ben Jay's talk at Downtown Athletic Club

February 6th, 2013
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On what some consider an impossible job:

"I wouldn't have come here if I didn't think it was great."

On the fallout of the Wonder Blunder:

"I've read everything. … There isn't anything there that isn't correctible. … They're teachable moments. … We're moving forward."

On competing while meeting compliance standards:

"We're going to win and we're going to win well. … We're going to do the right thing."

He said there are three words he says he lives by: integrity, accountability and passion.

"I'm lucky I get to get up and go to a job I love."

On changing the culture of the department:

"We have to think differently. We have to think big."

"Our future is dependent on one thing: change."

"It's been a culture of doing things the way they've been done in the past. All that has done has put us behind."

"We have to be better than OK."

On the future related to conference realignment:

"You're going to see four super conferences of 16 to 20 teams each. They may break away from the NCAA. That's the reality we have to be prepared for. We have to look ahead and position ourselves to be one of those 'haves.'"

"We have to develop a strategic plan. … We have to come up with a solid financial plan."

He says the facilities are not good, and that includes "deferred maintenance issues."

He said a goal is to improve overall GPA to 3.0. It is around 2.8 or 2.9 now, and he wants to identify potential Rhodes scholars.

"We've got to make sure we're taking care of our student athletes. … We're going to win. But we're not going to win at all costs. I want to win in the classroom, too."

"This is a new era of Hawaii athletics."

Answering a question about being split between the Mountain West and the Big West:

"I think for the time-being we're in the right place. But we have to get ourselves in position to compete with the super conferences."

Answering a question about his relationship with the legislature:

"I am meeting with both presidents. The faculty senate as well."

"Meet, meet, meet. I'm taking on as many engagements as I can."

Answering the question, "Warrior Nation or Rainbow Nation?"

"We have too many names of teams. Who are we? … I have a bunch of confidential envelopes waiting for me (with coaches' thoughts). It's important from a branding standpoint."

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