RALEIGH, N.C. --- The overwhelming narrative crafted today at N.C. State --- where Maryland athletic director Debbie Yow is headed to become the athletic director --- was one of family.
Yow grew up in North Carolina. Her husband's ancestors came from the state. One sister coached at N.C. State, another was an All-American in basketball there.
There was a reference to seasons of a person's life, and at age 58 there is certainly some validity to that for Yow. Chances are excellent this is her last stop.
But Maryland played a role in this, too. Not intentionally, but rather because of the sudden instability at the presidential level on campus.
C.D. Mote Jr. is retiring in August. N.C. State chancellor Randy Woodson took over just a few months ago.
There was the unknown in College Park, and a high degree of certainty in Raleigh.
"When Brit [Kirwan] left, I went through the same process and it worked out," Yow said. "I’ve always understood as the AD, wheoever the president is, I have to line up with what they expect. That’s kind of my orientation. But it is nice to kind of pick your chancellor and that’s what I was able to do. I like that. It fits some of the things that matter to me more than they used to since Kay’s passing and that’s being around for family functions."
No question, the discussion was and will continue to get back to family before long. But there was a rational element to this as well.
When you don't know who your boss is going to be or how well you'll get along with him or her and the opportunity is presented elsewhere to know what to expect, it's often smart to take it. And that's exactly what Yow did.