Martin Jarmond has officially been hired by UCLA, Chancellor Gene Block announced. While the national reception has been overwhelming positive for the Bruins and on Jarmond’s behalf, we still have the transition from Dan Guerrero to Jarmond before he can officially take over.
Guerrero is scheduled to retire next month and so we’ll have to wait until then to see if any radical changes are made on Jarmond’s behalf. And also until then, we’ll still be receiving Guerrero’s messages regarding UCLA Bruins athletics.
That being said, Guerrero addressed the Bruins Nation via a prepared statement. Here’s the full statement:
Dear Bruin Faithful:
I’d like to be among the first to formally congratulate Martin Jarmond on being named UCLA’s next Alice and Nahum Lainer Family Director of Athletics. Please join me in welcoming him to Westwood and into the Bruin Family.
I have known Martin for over a decade. Having worked with him in various capacities over the years, including, currently, on the Men’s Basketball Oversight Committee, I know firsthand the qualities he possesses that made him so impressive to the search committee and to the Chancellor. Having sat in the athletic director chair at Boston College for the past three years, Martin has the experience of leading a department at a top-notch academic institution and facing the daily challenges of supporting student-athletes in an ever-changing collegiate athletics landscape. I know many of my colleagues, including one of my closest in the profession – Gene Smith – who had Martin on his senior staff at Ohio State, think incredibly highly of him.
A former men’s basketball student-athlete himself, Martin is known for his commitment to student-athlete welfare, which obviously aligns very well with our priorities in Westwood. He will bring energy and innovation to the role. He has the drive and the understanding of Power Five college athletics to have a profound impact on our university, and above all else, he shares the values so important to UCLA Athletics: an emphasis on academic success, a commitment to broad-based excellence and winning, and a dedication to public service and diversity and inclusion.
Martin will have at his disposal the benefit of a very supportive campus administration, led by Chancellor Block. I know that the incredible athletic department staff and our base of devoted supporters who love the Bruins will welcome him with open arms.
I will do everything in my power to make this a smooth transition for Martin, our coaches and staff, and all Bruin student-athletes. While my official retirement date is July 1, 2020, I will continue to be available as a resource for as long as is helpful. In addition, our tremendous athletics staff at all levels of the organization will continue to work every day toward the excellence that defines UCLA.
Transitioning leadership in the midst of a global pandemic, as staff and students continue to work and learn remotely, is a task that is certainly not in any athletic director handbook. Still, I am confident that UCLA Athletics is in a position to navigate the future unknowns as well as any program in the country, always with the best interests of our student-athletes in mind.
I agree, it will be tough to transition amid a pandemic, but I think it can be done. It’s also very refreshing to know that he’s volunteering to be a resource as well, if necessary.
All in all, it’s a positive message among a positive time of change in the UCLA history books.
Here’s to you, Martin, inspiring positivity already.