Sept. 24, 2010

 

SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. (AP) - Seton Hall athletic director Joseph Quinlan Jr. will resign after a five-year tenure marked by problems with former basketball coach Bobby Gonzalez.

Quinlan announced Friday that he will be stepping down on Oct. 8 to pursue other opportunities.

The resignation comes six months after the fiery Gonzalez was fired following a season of player problems on and off the court.

Deputy athletic director Duane Bailey and senior associate athletic director Ginger Fulton will oversee the department's day-to-day operations through the remainder of the academic year, the school said.

"I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish over the course of the last five years," Quinlan said. "We've dramatically improved our athletics facilities, including renovations to Owen T. Carroll Field, the opening of the Jack & Charlotte Lavery Coach Center and the men's basketball program's move to the Prudential Center. Both of our basketball programs are on strong footing."

Seton Hall hired former U.S. Olympic coach Anne Donovan to take over the women's basketball program this fall.

Quinlan's future with the Big East Conference school had been in question after Law School Dean Patrick Hobbs was appointed to oversee the department in July 2009.

The university also is searching for a new president, so Quinlan would have needed approval from the next president.

"We are thankful for Joe's leadership over the last five years," Hobbs said. "His work has provided the athletics department with a solid foundation for future success."

Quinlan hired Gonzalez four years ago to replace Louis Orr. While the basketball team showed improvement, Gonzalez caused problems with his behavior on the court. He had a run-in with then-Rutgers coach Fred Hill after a game at the Prudential Center late in the 2007-08 season, and he was suspended by Quinlan for the opening game of the next season for criticizing officials in that game.