Not as much reaction to the hiring of Larry Scott this morning as you might expect, but there is a bit out there worth noting.
First, the only news story I could find with new quotes from Scott that were also interesting came from the USA Today. In it, Scott further bolsters hope that he's really beginning a new era in Pac-10 leadership:
"I think the reason the presidents wanted me (for the job) was because I come with a fresh perspective and an open mind, and I think they have an open mind," he said. "I have a lot to learn and to understand about the issues, but one perspective also is to look at what fans may want and at what will drive the most revenue.
"I am familiar with those issues from being with the WTA. Sometimes we made compromises. But I don't pretend to be an expert yet, and whatever point of view I have, you have to work closely with other conference commissioners. I understand these are complex issues. I'll start by doing a lot of listening to the leadership from our 10 universities."
Scott said one of his "clear mandates" is to improve the league's exposure and its media deals.
"This is a very interesting time in terms of sports media, and we have a lot to work with there," he said. "I'm looking forward to starting and finding out about the best way to go forward."
Next, there's this interesting piece from The Times in London, lamenting the WTA's loss of Scott. If you only read one story on this page, read this one -- it, more than anything, convinces me the Pac-10 made a heck of a hire:
The loss of Larry Scott, the man whose persuasive talents brought about equal prize money at the four grand slam tournaments and a raft of other astonishing improvements in women's tennis, to something called the NCAA PAC-10, is something that tennis is going to take a while to recover from. Arguably its most progressive leader has packed his bags and gone back to college.
There is nothing, one supposes, like leaving on a high and that is certainly true of Scott, the chief executive of the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour for the past six years, before which it was just the good old WTA, without a sponsor that would transform its global reach and indulge its wildest imaginations. He will surely do for college sports, as its new commissioner with so much influence across the American psyche, what he did for a sport that has become a market leader in the world of sport.
I love it how they refer to it as "something called the NCAA PAC-10," by the way. There are similar overtones in this piece from Bob Larson's Tennis News:
What the WTA is going to miss is Scott's people skills. He was tough in the boardroom, extremely convivial in public. He cajoled, never demanded. He negotiated, never ordered. He also surrounded himself with some superb people and it wouldn't be surprising if his successor is his No. 2, Stacey Allaster, who might be the most powerful woman executive in women's sports.
Then there's this opinion piece from John McGrath at The (Tacoma) News Tribune, following much the same refrain as our post from last night:
Some might find it troubling, the idea of hiring a French-speaking, squash-playing, literature-reading European history buff from the East Coast to oversee a conference that helped give Norm Van Brocklin his scowl and Gary Payton his swagger.
I find it refreshing. Scott’s appointment might be the first progressive move this band of sleepy-headed brothers has made in the three decades since it expanded into Arizona.
And, finally, there is this nice take from our SB Nation brethren at Bruins Nation:
The Pac 10 office has been old and stale for years now and Scott brings an energy and thought process the conference is in desperate need of. Scott still must prove himself when he takes over on July 1, but he is as qualified as they come. He may not have experience in collegiate sports (outside of his years playing tennis at Harvard), but Scott has experience in matters similar and in a sport that faced challenges not unlike the Pac 10.
What's refreshing is not only the choice of Scott, but the comments from various people in the conference who ackowledge the choice of Scott was to bring new thinking to the conference. It seems as if the entire conference is ready to move forward and it will be led by Scott, who seems nothing but the perfect man for the job.