Arizona State athletic director Anderson resigns

Ray Anderson resigned from his position as Arizona State’s athletic director, the school announced in a news release Monday. The move is effective immediately.

“It has been a privilege to serve as ASU’s athletic director for nearly a decade,” Anderson said in a statement. “We have entered an unprecedented era where the number and magnitude of changes in the college sports landscape are astounding. As I approach my seventh decade of life, these are not matters that my leadership would be able to corral during my tenure. Continuity of leadership will be needed, and I am choosing to step aside to let the university find that leader.”

Anderson’s resignation comes on the heels of the program announcing before the season that they would self-impose a bowl ban in hopes of reducing penalties from the pending investigation into recruiting malpractices by former football coach Herm Edwards — whom Anderson hired — and his staff. The bowl ban was announced four days before Kenny Dillingham’s debut as the Sun Devils’ new coach.

The school announced Monday that Jim Rund, ASU’s senior vice president of educational outreach and student services, will be the interim athletic director in the wake of Anderson’s departure. Rund was also the interim athletic director in 2013 when then-ASU AD Steve Patterson left for Texas.

Anderson, who attended and played football at Stanford, was hired by ASU in January 2014 to be the program’s next athletic director. While Anderson had been an agent to NFL players and coaches, as well as the vice president of the Falcons and the NFL’s executive vice president of football operations, Arizona State was Anderson’s first college position.

His tenure in Tempe was one that featured highs such as overseeing the $268 million renovation to Sun Devil Stadium, including its naming rights agreement, as well as a $38 million apparel deal with Adidas and ASU’s forthcoming move to the Big 12. But it also had several lows; Anderson was criticized for the lack of success the football program had under his watch and most notably under Edwards, who went 28-27 during his time as coach.

Arizona State’s next athletic director, according to the school’s news release, will “help navigate ASU’s upcoming move into the Big 12 conference and other landscape-shifting issues including NIL, the transfer portal and recent Title IX challenges.”

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