David Matlin's merits, challenges - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

David Matlin's merits, challenges

Dave Matlin Dave Matlin
MANOA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

He may not be the most well-known or most recognized face, and certainly he isn't a prototypical candidate, but the matrix of Dave Matlin's skills is exactly what UH Manoa Chancellor Robert Bley-Vroman was looking for in his next Athletics Director.

"We need to go against the grain. We need to understand what is specific to Hawaii" said Bley-Vroman.

The Chancellor was impressed with Matlin's private sector experience in the state, as well as his connections on the mainland.

"It's about having contacts, having people you can call whether they're commissioners of conferences, ESPN, former athletic directors" said Matlin at his introductory press conference Wednesday.

Bley-Vroman also pointed out Matlin's out-of-the-box thinking as a strength.

"There's new creative ideas and opportunities that I have that I'd like to do. I don't want to say what they are right now because I don't want anyone else to do them before we do them" said Matlin.

What he'll have to do is face down a budget that has run in a deficit 11 of the past 13 years.

"Coming up with a realistic funding model, that's probably the biggest issue, especially with the recent developments in the last year nationally" said Matlin's friend and mentor, and former UH Manoa Athletics Director Jim Donovan, now the AD at Cal State Fullerton.

"There's no question, we need to relook at our model. You've probably heard that before, there's percentages out there you can say how we're institutionally funded compared to others" said Matlin.

Regardless of where it comes from, Matlin now becomes the man in charge of funding a 32 million dollar annual budget, and more.

"It's not just the budget, it's not a question of cutting expenses and making more. I think it's defining what athletics is about" said the Chancellor.

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