Marcum In, West Out

Marshall University President Dan Angel stood on the side, beaming, as his new athletic director Bob 'Kayo' Marcum, answered questions in the Big Green room at the Cam Henderson Center. Angel had a good reason to beam: Marcum is the perfect man for the job.

A crowd of about 100 witnessed the end of the Lance West era, and the beginning of Marcum's tenure as 'interim' athletics director at Marshall on Tuesday morning.

"There is no question he is a known commodity nationally," Angel said after the press conference officially introducing Marcum as athletic director. "He's got a track record over a couple of decades. I think he is the right guy, in the right place, at the right time."

Bob 'Kayo' Marcum is a Huntington native and Marshall graduate. He graduated from Huntington High in 1955 and Marshall in 1959. Earlier this month, Marcum announced his retirement as the athletic director at the University of Massachusetts. His retirement at UMass is effective on June 14, and Marcum will begin his duties at Marshall on July 1.

Marshall President Dan Angel gives new athletics director Bob Marcum his green jacket at Tuesday's press conference.

"I just looked at it as a rare opportunity," Marcum said to the media and supporters in attendance. "Sure, we have a few problems to work our way through, and a few programs that we need to develop a little bit more."

"But, that's the excitement of it."

Marcum's experience is broad and deep, both in the business and collegiate athletics realms. He has held the title of athletics director at Kansas (1978-1982), South Carolina (1982-1988), as well as at UMass most recently. In addition, Marcum was the president of the Atlanta Motor Speedway (1990-1992) and of the Charlotte Motor Speedway (1988-1990).

Also announced at the press conference was the restructuring of other positions both in the athletic department and the university in general. Former athletics director Lance West is now the Vice President for Alumni Development, and Keith Spears is now Vice President for Institutional Advancement.

But it was the Bob Marcum show on Tuesday, make no doubt about it. Short of singling out specific issues to be addressed, Marcum offered up what his tenure will be all about to those in attendance:

"I have a way of conducting my business that, over a period of time, has proven to be pretty successful," Bob Marcum summed up. "And I'll continue doing it that way."

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