Hackett on De Carolis Hire, Retaining Minnick

Michigan interim athletic director Jim Hackett talks the latest hire of Bob De Carolis and explains his refusal of the resignation of athletic director of football Jim Minnick's, who was arrested on May 8, on suspicion of drunk driving.

Michigan interim athletic director Jim Hackett isn’t afraid to make a bold move.

He is, after all, the guy who lured Jim Harbugh to U-M and just signed a major apparel deal with Nike on Monday.

So his next move, well, isn’t as sexy, but could be just as affective.

On Tuesday, U-M’s athletic department announced the hiring of Bob De Carolis as a senior advisor to Hackett and Michigan’s athletic department.

De Carolis, who worked at U-M from 1979-98, recently left Oregon State University after a 13-year term as athletic director. As noted in U-M’s press release, De Carolis will work with Hackett on capital and special projects, as part of his job description.

“I am delighted to welcome Bob back to U-M in this advisory position,” said Hackett. “Bob offered to assist the university and we will benefit from his 36 years of experience and perspective.”

With Hackett under an interim title as AD, De Carolis made it clear he’s not interested in the permanent role as athletic director at Michigan.

“Sandra [wife] and I had always thought about retiring to Ann Arbor. The opportunity to leverage my experience and assist at an institution I hold near and dear is beyond my wildest dreams,” said De Carolis said in a written statement. “I want to thank Jim Hackett for providing this outstanding opportunity. In my talks with Jim I was crystal clear that my intentions are not to be a candidate for the AD position. The challenge is that I’m not ready for retirement and plenty of gas is left in the tank. I’m here to help and assist him and the department.”

Minnick Not Going Anywhere

On May 8, Michigan associate athletic director of football Jim Minnick was arrested for suspicion of drink driving. Soon after Minnick would try to submit his resignation to interim athletic director Jim Hackett.

According Detroit Free Press’ Mark Snyder, Hackett wasn’t having it.

"I refused it," Hackett told Snyder along with a small group meeting of reporters. "This is a man who served … seven tours of duty (in the Marines). Selflessness is a way I would describe him. He got thousands of emails, most of them from people who served in war with him, urging him to soldier through this. He made a life terrible mistake. He dealt with something that can kill people. People die, either himself or others, from what happened. So the gravity of it was not dismissed at all.

"He and I had deep conversations about it and I was convinced this is a guy who will learn from this mistake."

Minnick, who is a close personal friend of U-M coach Jim Harbaugh, was hired shortly after Harbaugh’s hire in December. He had previously served as a Lt. Colonel in the Marne Corps, he has since retired.

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