Denver PR Blog


PR Debacle of the Day
April 3, 2013, 12:29 am
Filed under: Crisis Communications

Last December, Rutgers University officials – including its President and Athletic Director – watched this video of its head basketball coach verbally and physically abusing players and thought a three-game suspension and fine was appropriate punishment.

Now, the world has seen it, and it is only a matter of time before Rutgers fires the coach. The question is how long they will allow their brand to twist in the wind before they finally do it. Free PR tip: quicker is better.

UPDATE: Rutgers made the classic public relations mistake of only dealing with part of the issue when it fired the coach on Wednesday morning. Had Rutgers also fired the athletic director who knew about the abuses months ago and did little, it would have dealt with the issue in one swift moment. Instead, the attention will now turn to the athletic director instead of simply dissipating.

UPDATE II: It took 24 hours for Rutgers to fire the coach, and an additional two days for the athletic director to “resign.”