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Penn State AD Joyner announces retirement

Updated: Wednesday, June 18 2014, 12:03 PM EDT

By: Marc Stempka

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Pennsylvania State University said Tuesday the school's athletic director will retire at the end of August, ending a nearly three-year tenure as head of university athletics.

Old Main made the announcement in a news release, stating David Joyner plans to retire from the university Aug. 1 and has offered to assist with the transition of a new AD.

"It has been an honor and a privilege to serve Penn State," Joyner said in the release. "Our student athletes, coaches, staff and the university community were a daily source of inspiration for me. The spirit of Penn State is strong, and the department's commitment to integrity, as well as academic and athletic excellence is stronger than ever."

Joyner was named acting athletic director in November 2011, shortly after the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal came to light. Joyner took over as acting AD when the school placed athletic director Tim Curley on leave because of the Sandusky scandal.

Curley, along with other former Penn State administrators Gary Schultz and Graham Spanier, are awaiting trial on charges they covered up Sandusky's crimes.

Joyner was named fulltime athletic director in January 2013 by former President Rodney Erickson. At that time, Erickson said Joyner would serve as AD while he was president. Erickson retired May 11.

During Joyner's time, he was responsible for leading searches to fill open head football coaching vacancies. Joyner hired Bill O'Brien in early 2012 to replace legendary coach Joe Paterno, who was fired by the school's board of trustees because of the Sandusky scandal.

O'Brien left in January of this year to take the head coaching position with the Houston Texans. Joyner was then tasked with finding another head coach, picking Vanderbilt University's head football coach, James Franklin, to lead the Nittany Lion program.

Joyner was recently named as a defendant in wrongful-termination lawsuit filed by former PSU fencing coach Emmanuil Kaidanov.

Joyner also oversaw several successful athletic events at the school, including the women's basketball team's run deep into the NCAA tournament, the women's volleyball team capturing this year's national championship title, and the beginning of Penn State hockey as a division I sport.

Joyner has been the focus on much criticism by Penn State alumni. Some were upset by how he was selected for the position, and that he was a former member of the BOT with little athletic experience.

Joyner was a former football player for the school, having played under Paterno.

Penn State President Eric Barron will name a search committee to work with a North Carolina-based search firm, Collegiate Sports Associates, to find a new AD, the release said. PSU Senior Vice President for Finance and Business David Gray will chair the search committee.

"Dave Joyner has provided steady leadership to athletics for nearly three years," Barron said in the release. "I want to thank him for his hard work in upholding Penn State's legacy of academic and athletic success."

Barron said the next AD will need to have a thorough understanding of National Collegiate Athletic Association compliance standards and a commitment to academic integrity and the graduation of student athletes.

Photo courtesy: Penn State University

Penn State AD Joyner announces retirement

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