Former Redskin Brad Edwards named new AD at George Mason

Brad Edwards, former safety on the Washington Redskins from 1990-93 and athletic director at Jacksonville University has been named George Mason’s new athletic director. The athletic department could use some new direction, especially with the move to the Atlantic 10 conference, and this hire seems to be a step in the right direction. I love the hire because Edwards’ fundraising abilities are impressive in his short time working in college athletics. From his bio on the Jacksonville athletics site:

“Over the course of the year, Edwards and the leadership team at Jacksonville raised a department record of approximately $5,000,000 in new capital gifts for athletic facilities, spearheading the development of a 5,500 seat expansion with a new press box to the Football and Lacrosse stadium, a new Softball office/locker room complex with covered batting cage, and a new Lacrosse team meeting room.”

The key words in that are “new capital gifts”. Today’s press release mentions this number at $3 million, either way that’s impressive at an Atlantic Sun school. George Mason has never had a healthy crop of corporate sponsors which never made sense to me considering the school’s close proximity to so many successful corporations and being in the federal government’s back yard. Perhaps Edwards can change that and get the added funding needed to finish the renovation projects the university has had planned for years. There are still athletic facilities that could use an upgrade at Mason and Edwards also involved in the design of new ones while at Jacksonville. Athletic facilities are becoming an arms race more and more in college athletics so Edwards background in this area should be especially pleasing to fans.

The local ties is another big positive. Being a former Super Bowl champ on the Washington Redskins makes you a big time local hero in this area. I would think Edwards has a lot of connections in the area that could benefit the athletic department.

Edwards also recently went through the process of hiring of a new head basketball coach, a bit of information I’m sure many will find relevant. The coach he fired? Cliff Warren, who was an assistant under Paul Hewitt at Georgia Tech and Siena.

  • mdemirbas

    Please bring football to GMU!

  • GaMoo79

    Please don’t.

    • dsnjd1

      Oh’ no not again. I agree with GaMoo79. The traffic on 123 and Braddock Road on a normal business day is bad enough, add to it the heavier weekend traffic, and the opposition from local homeowners, and it a non starter. Sorry dreamers, I live in reality. Maybe on the new Prince William Campus,…. but even that location is not set-up to accept the thousands of cars that football would” potentially” generate ..and its is in “bum f**k”! Who’s gonna want to travel there for a game….keep dreaming ..sorry….it ain’t gonna happen.

      • David Houck

        I guess you’re a “glass half full” guy?

        • dsnjd1

          No just a realist. We sit in one of the most congested traffic corridors in the D.C. area with little existing access to main thoroughfares and a community that would be adverse to the construction or the capital expenditures necessary to provide such access.

  • G-n-G

    Arms race is right. I read this in a recent SI.com article on VCU.

    Construction for a new 60,000-square foot practice facility – complete with players lounges and dining rooms, video viewing rooms, an academic center and a Hall of Fame exhibit in the main lobby – is scheduled to begin on June 2. VCU will reportedly increase its basketball budget, already larger than multiple traditional high-majors, by $200,000 this year and $100,000 next year.

    GaMoo, I’m with you. Stick with one major men’s sport and do it right. I don’t see VCU adding football.

    • GaMoo79

      Exactly. Maybe football someday, but right now let’s bring excellence, continued excellence, to what we do have. Both in terms of on court results and facilities. I live in Richmond, and I am tired of hearing “VCU is doing this, and VCU is building that”. I really think TOC coasted in his later years. Here’s hoping Edwards will bring the same energy to the job that he had when he flattened that Bills receiver in the video.
      Soccer champs. Baseball champs. Basketball champs? It can be done!

    • Bentley

      Agree. If you chase two rabbits you will catch none. Focus on getting this program back on solid ground, no excuse to not have a contending program with a solid turnout every night. Need to get the attendance up, increase marketing, and really focus on what Coach L once called a hidden gem of a program in a major metro area. Get the facilities they need addressed (in this and baseball among others) and stop trying to short change it. If you made the commitment to move to the A10, now you have to make the commitment to financially back the success of the existing programs long term. Don’t over extend now and try and do football. That should be a 5-10 year out thought. And if you build a consistent contending program in A10 basketball, the money will be there to have a football option in a decade.

  • Bentley

    need to really revamp marketing. Mason baseball has some solid looking gear, best I have seen in most of their sports yet I cannot find it in stores, or hats anywhere? You would think stores in at least in Fairfax would be stocked with Mason gear… Nope. Just VT, JMU, and UVA with the occasional kids tshirt for Mason. Come on. Selling merchandise brings revenue AND advertisement as the more people wear the shirt the more people see the name/logo. Get the stuff out there, everywhere.

    • C.HILL

      I’ve seen them have gear at the Target in Fairfax (near Burke), the Target in Potomac Yard, and the Burke Walmart. I also have seen them at the Kohl’s in Burke and Fair Lakes. But their GMU stock doesn’t seem to sell better than UVA, VT, and the UM gear they usually sell near to it. Typically the gear I see is basketball related or just generic t-shirts, hats, and sweatshirts. The real problem is our ugly logo and getting the fans to buy the gear.

      • GaMoo79

        Yep. I don’t hate the logo, its better than the synchronized swimming looking thing we had 15 years ago or so, but its not distinctive either. It doesn’t say “Wow, I want one of those on my cap!” either.

        • C.HILL

          Yep that was worse than the current one. But we could argue all day about the logo and what it should be or shouldn’t. That’s a topic on this blog a lot in the comments.

      • dsnjd1

        I was shocked a few months ago when I walked into the Walgreens that’s, Walgreens, not Walmart or Target in Stephens City….that’s “little Stephens City”, not Spotsylvania or Warrenton …and found George Mason apparel offered for sale next to the ever-present U.Va and Va.Tech merchandise. That’s progress especially considering that I am only 45 away from INSWH (aka, JMU). That’s real progress.

  • Jim

    Why don’t they sell naming rights to the Patriot Center?

    • GaMoo79

      New president. New AD. You never know…

      • David Houck

        Because they don’t own the Patriot Center…

        • GaMoo79

          The school does, and the school can do with it whatever it/they want…. Including selling the naming rights, making additions, or tearing it down. But the initiative has to come from somewhere. Cabrera and Edwards come to mind as good prospects, although not the only ones. Of course neither of these guys own the building. Should have gone without saying.

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