Rutgers University shelling out serious cash to rehab tarnished image

Posted at 6:20 PM, May 31, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-31 18:20:40-04

MANHATTAN (PIX11) — With no signs of slowing down, the pressure continued to mount on Rutgers University and its handling of yet another crisis on their campus, and again surrounding their Athletic Department.

Crisis Management Expert Mike Paul said he believes Rutgers has handled this latest mess poorly from the very beginning.  As news surfaced of abuse allegations against now embattled Athletic Director Julie Hermann from her former players at the University of Tennessee,  even more information has surfaced nearly every single day this week, which has created more problems and headaches for Rutgers.

However, aside from one statement earlier this week, the state university remained in large part silent with the public still waiting for answers.

“The ‘fine’ that is happening here is in the court of public opinion. People want an answer now,” said Paul.

To add to their issues, Rutgers list of expenses also continued to grow.

Nearly half a million dollars was dished out as a settlement for fired mens basketball coach, Mike Rice and more than $1 million was paid to Tim Pernetti, Rutgers former Athletic Director who was forced to resign.

A search firm Parker Executive Search, based out of Georgia,  paid $70,000 to allocate a list of candidates for the position of Athletic Director and even conducted background checks.

Now, just this week, Crisis Management Firm Hill & Knowlton was hired at a cost of $150,000.

Paul doesn’t believe Rutgers can keep up at the same pace for much longer, especially with the media not letting up, state politicians angered, and perhaps most importantly many donors are unhappy and  are considering pulling out.

All in, Rutgers may be forced to make a decision and step away from their support of Hermann.

“My prediction within the next seven days, she will either be forced out or she will resign,” said Paul.