Ex–San Diego State University athletic director Jeff Schemmel exited Aztec Mesa back in November 2009, ejected by then–president Stephen Weber after it came to light in a divorce case that Schemmel had spent state funds visiting an alleged mistress in Alabama. He later landed on his feet as head of the college division of San Diego’s JMI Sports. As we reported last fall, the company was set up by Padres owner John Moores to consult with sports interests, both amateur and professional, about how to develop stadiums and handle management issues, including “gender equity evaluation” and “NCAA infraction representation.” Now comes word that Schemmel, a Moores protégé when he was at SDSU, has played a major role in getting a new job for a veteran of another legendary athletic scandal.
Colorado State University announced two weeks ago that Larry Eustachy would become the school’s new head basketball coach, thanks in part to the search efforts of JMI and Schemmel, hired in March by the university for $75,000 to serve as chief coach hunter for Colorado athletic director Jack Graham. (An account of the hiring in the Fort Collins Coloradoan didn’t mention Schemmel’s San Diego State history but did note that he “is the brother of Colorado Rockies radio broadcaster and former CSU play-by-play voice Jerry Schemmel.”)
Alameda-born Eustachy was bounced as head coach of the Iowa State Cyclones in 2003 after the Des Moines Register ran photos of him partying with attractive female students at a beer bash only hours after his team was beaten by the University of Missouri. Photos and videos of similar conduct elsewhere also surfaced, and Eustachy’s divorce from both the university and his wife quickly followed. After his new appointment was announced last week, Eustachy, now a recovering alcoholic, told the Coloradoan that his sudden downfall had “humbled” him. “I don’t think these things happen by mistake; they happen for a reason.… I think someone stronger than me put me in that situation.” Colorado volleyball coach Tom Hilbert blamed the Web for his friend Eustachy’s problems. “He was the first person to get busted in the internet age. He didn’t do anything illegal; it was simply a little bit of immaturity.”