Iowa’s interim AD Beth Goetz talks past settlements, gambling investigation and short-term goals
IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - After 17 years with the Hawkeyes, Gary Barta’s final day as Iowa’s athletic director was Aug. 1. Serving in his place on an interim basis is Beth Goetz who joined Iowa’s staff in September.
Goetz joined Iowa’s staff as the deputy director of athletics and chief operating officer. Prior to that, she served as director of athletics for four years at Ball State University.
“I know I came here a good handful of times and usually left on the losing end of the score board,” she said about her time at Ball State.
Goetz steps in for Barta who retired following controversies around a slew of discrimination and other settlements. Those topics were something Goetz addressed at her introductory press conference on Thursday.
“Certainly we, just like any other institutions, have had trying moments. I think it’s important, although I wasn’t here for those, that I understand what those issues are, what those issues were like then and try and ensure and help support us in not making any repetitive mistakes,” she said.
Goetz has experience doing that. She led the University of Minnesota’s athletic department after their athletic director resigned amid a sexual harassment scandal in 2015. It was the totality of Iowa’s coaching staff and legacy that led her here.
“No one, and I mean no one in the country can look across a department and say, ‘hey, we have that experience, the success, the tradition, the type of people that Iowa has,’” Goetz said.
As a former student athlete and coach, she believes she understands perspective of those within in her department. Over the next nine months, she hopes to move Iowa athletics forward. That starts with potentially the reinstatement process for athletes involved in Iowa’s gambling investigation.
“We’re optimistic that we are just hopefully days away perhaps from getting some feedback at least initially on what that means for our student-athletes who currently are here and have remaining eligibility,” she explained.
Part of her duties also include inheriting Barta’s responsibilities. Goetz confirmed that offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Brian Ferentz reports to her and the amendment to his contract is still in place.
“His goal, and I know because I’ve sat down with him, I’ve sat down with Kirk [Ferentz], and really the goal of every coach that we have here is to win games. I’m 100 percent convinced going into those conversations, I was going out, that their focus is on how do we win football games and how do we develop these young men,” Goetz said.
Goetz was at Iowa’s ‘Grapple on the Gridiron’ back in 2015 and will be a part of the Iowa women’s basketball’s ‘Crossover at Kinnick’ in October. It was Iowa head coach Lisa Bluder’s idea, but Goetz appreciates the creativeness and enthusiasm to want to showcase Hawkeye athletics.
“I’m not even sure we were two weeks removed from the Final Four, and she said, ‘hey, I’ve got this idea.’ Clearly, we had to vet it. It took us a while to sort of work through that, but could not be more excited. I think we’re at about 30,000 tickets out right now, and the goal is to work our way to a sellout,” she said.
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