Souhan: Amid challenges, Big Ten boss Kevin Warren stays true to his upbeat self

BleedGopher

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per Souhan:

In his first year with the Big Ten, Kevin Warren became known as the first Black person to become a major conference commissioner.

In his second year with the Big Ten, Warren became known as everyone's favorite piñata.

The former Vikings COO took heat for deciding to play football in a pandemic, then for postponing the season, then for restarting the season, then for a messy schedule in which games were canceled because of COVID-19.

Donald Trump called him to urge him to play. Players, parents, politicians, coaches and athletic directors begged or petitioned to play, while medical experts warned of the myriad risks of sports during a pandemic.

Warren became the target for those who oversimplified the decisionmaking process, which included chancellors, university presidents, athletic directors and medical personnel. Yet in some ways, Warren said this week, 2020 was a year of growth and comfort.

He split his work between his home in Edina, the family apartment on Lake Shore Drive in Chicago, and the Big Ten offices in Chicago. In Edina, he would rise early, ride his Peloton, then conduct Zoom meetings, sometimes from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.


Go Gophers!!
 

#2Gopher

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Tough year with many darts being tossed at him unfairly this year. Covid was a whole new deal with many unknowns. Unfortunately many who knew nothing of this disease were shouting out the advice how to deal with it, or rather how not to deal with it.
 

Bayfieldgopher

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Being BIG Commissioner is a tough job in itself, especially the first year or two. Then throw in covid and all its unknowns, uncertainties, controversies and critics. Its a no win situation.

No thank you.
 

PMWinSTP

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Four posts for the haters to come out.
 

Pete smith

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not haters. Just a fact, any CEO whose concern lost $45 to 60 million would/should be fired. Some how It didn’t happen in the B1G. Wonder why?
 

Ogee Oglethorpe

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Somehow, somewhere, the notion came about that some people are above criticism, or at the least, the mere appearance of skepticism or criticism is 'hating', or in many cases called far worse things.

You can certainly argue the degree to which things may or may not have been botched, but I would struggle to find a way someone could make a compelling case that Warren handled things in 2020 in an above-average manner, at best.
 

Pompous Elitist

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Somehow, somewhere, the notion came about that some people are above criticism, or at the least, the mere appearance of skepticism or criticism is 'hating', or in many cases called far worse things.

You can certainly argue the degree to which things may or may not have been botched, but I would struggle to find a way someone could make a compelling case that Warren handled things in 2020 in an above-average manner, at best.
The Big Ten wasn’t able to get out of its own way all summer and fall, and Warren’s communication skills made Mark Coyle look like Bill Clinton. Ok, the last bit is maybe an overreach.

Total disaster was (barely) averted, but the program effects will still be felt for years to come.
 

MplsGopher

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Which Big Ten programs will feel effects for years to come, because they only played 7-9 games in 2020 instead of 9-11?
 

Word

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The Big Ten wasn’t able to get out of its own way all summer and fall, and Warren’s communication skills made Mark Coyle look like Bill Clinton. Ok, the last bit is maybe an overreach.

Total disaster was (barely) averted, but the program effects will still be felt for years to come.
People can agree or disagree with what the Big Ten did, but I agree with you that their lack of communication made things a lot worse PR-wise.
 
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