Chuck Landon: Shoemaker, College of Charleston a good fit
If the "Shoe" fits. ...
Dan Shoemaker has given new meaning to that old phrase.
For years, the Huntington native wanted to try his hand at collegiate athletic administration. But between his longtime job as ESPN's vice president of collegiate development and a lack of opportunity, it didn't happen.
Shoemaker has been hired by the College of Charleston as director of athletics advancement.
Basically, he's the deputy athletic director.
Although Shoemaker is working on a one-year contract worth $125,000, it appears the job will turn into a full-time position within Charleston's athletic department.
And why not?
In 2008, Shoemaker started the ultra-successful Charleston Classic basketball tournament. Then, in April 2012, he played a major behind-the-scenes role in the hire of Wheeling native Doug Wojcik as the Cougars' new head basketball coach.
So, it seemed like merely a matter of time until Shoemaker formally joined Charleston's athletic department.
Now, it has happened.
"It's a good opportunity for me," said Shoemaker. "I really like it here."
What's not to like? He was playing golf during our telephone interview.
But the real crux of the matter is this "Shoe" is indeed a good fit.
"The primary thing that I'm looking for him to help me do it develop a range of relationships in the local business community," Charleston athletic director Joe Hull told The Post and Courier newspaper. "We just don't do a good enough job in that area and haven't been able to put somebody on this to really start to work within the business community."
Well, they have someone now.
And I can't imagine a more perfect situation for both Shoemaker and the College of Charleston. Particularly, since the Cougars are so basketball driven.
"Dan knows mid-major basketball," Hull told the South Carolina newspaper. "There's also a sense that having someone who has been involved with ESPN for 25 years gives us a level of gravitas."
Indeed, it does.
And, along those lines, maybe if Shoemaker isn't too busy at Charleston he could lend Marshall some behind-the-scenes advice with its basketball hire.
Any help would be appreciated.
THE OTHER: All eyes have been on former Marshall basketball star DeAndre Kane as he has led Iowa State into the NCAA Tournament's Sweet 16.
And rightfully so.
Kane has been a pleasure to watch and Marshall's fans are cheering for him like he still is one of their own.
But there's another former Marshall star out there in the basketball world.
Remember Elijah Pittman?
After being dismissed from Marshall's basketball program after nine games last season, the 6-foot-9 forward played in Europe briefly.
But, now, Pittman is back in the United States playing for the Delaware 87ers of the NBA Developmental League. In four games, Pittman has averaged 7.0 points and 3.0 rebounds in 18.5 minutes.
Pittman reportedly is being paid $37,000, which is high among D-League salaries.
NEW JOB: Former Marshall assistant football coach Tim Billings is changing jobs. Billings, who was at Marshall for 10 years (1990-99), has accepted the head coaching and athletic director jobs at North Lamar High School in Texas.
Chuck Landon is a sports columnist for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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