Rutgers University is reportedly close to hiring Jeff Towers as the Scarlet Knights' recruiting coordinator. This would normally not be a big story, but the circumstances surrounding Towers' relationship with the university and head coach Kyle Flood makes this entire thing fall somewhere between strange and sketchy.
Towers, according to NJ.com, has been a major donor to the Rutgers' football program and most recently donated $1 million to help pay for Coach Flood's contract extension that was signed in September. If Towers were to be hired by the school, it would create quite an interesting dynamic having a wealthy booster -- who has no prior known experience with a football program -- as a recruiting coordinator that would be in regular contact with recruits and their families.
Adding Towers to the staff would be a strange move by Rutgers, as it would seem to invite all manner of scrutiny to their recruiting efforts. Hiring a well-known booster who has given large sums of money to the program as recruiting coordinator would make everyone outside the program skeptical whenever a high-level recruit signed with Rutgers.
There's also this interesting nugget from the NJ.com story about his payment, or lack there of.
In listing the recruiting-department position on its university human resources job board, the application stated that it was a non-state-funded post. Two school officials told NJ Advance Media it's possible that Towers -- who, according to real estate records, resides on a 34-acre property in Mahwah that was purchased for $19 million in 2009, -- won't take a salary for his position.
Towers taking no money for the position makes it even sketchier, as if he's volunteering to be able to have contact with recruits. If Rutgers does go through with this hire, it would bring tons of scrutiny and skepticism from rival teams and fans.
Rutgers is no stranger to controversy in the athletic department, with the most recent examples being AD Julie Hermann's multiple missteps with the press -- including an insensitive Jerry Sandusky joke and stating that she hoped a local newspaper would shut down -- and former basketball coach Mike Rice was fired in 2013 after video came out of him abusing players at practice.
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