Gosha lands at Tulane; investigation preceded his FAMU departure

Mike Smith
Kortne Gosha

By St. Clair Murraine
Outlook Staff Report

While his former employer searches for a new athletic director, Kortne Gosha has managed to find a new job just 16 days after he abruptly resigned as Vice President and Director of Athletics at FAMU.

Multiple sources, including a post on Gosha’s Facebook page, have indicated that he’s been hired by Tulane in the Green Waves’ athletic department. His new title is Senior Associate Athletic Director, Facilities and Operations.

Gosha was in the midst of negotiating a new contract with FAMU when he abruptly announced his resignation on April 20. His three-year contract was due for renewal this fall.

However, his relationship with the university was unraveling.

According to public records request information first published by WFSU and later by the Tallahassee Democrat, Gosha was being investigated by FAMU at the time of his departure. The report by the law firm GrayRobinson is dated April 19. On that date, Gosha spoke passionately at a basketball banquet about his role at the university.

Things took a different turn within 24 hours. The GrayRobinson investigation revealed five areas of major concern, according to the Democrat.

Primary among the issues and agreement that gave Urban Edge Network rights to stream FAMU sports on HBCU League Pass+, a UEN streaming platform. The deal was in conflict with an agreement between the Southwestern Athletic Conference had in place for televising competition involving it member schools.

FAMU left the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference after 39 years to join SWAC last summer. That set off a run of success under Gosha’s leadership that culminated with the football team making the FCS playoffs for the first time in two decades. Leading up to that, FAMU announced a uniform deal with LeBron James, and the football program was the subject of a documentary featured on ESPN.

Gosha was also shepherding a $10 million renovation of Bragg Stadium.

But there was trouble brewing, according to what the Democrat reported finding in the records it obtained.

 In  addition to the UEN

deal to stream FAMU sports, placing the university’s logo on the car of a the NY Racing team was done without permission, hiring policies also weren’t followed in an attempt to hire a track coach, and violation of a NCAA rule when athletes were provided meals and per diem simultaneously.  

 The report that outlined reasons for taking disciplinary action against Gosha, also indicated that other departments complained about working with Gosha’s team.

Gosha, who told the Democrat the allegations against him are “untruths, retaliatory conduct and partial information,” has hired attorney Marie A. Mattox to represent him.

Meanwhile, FAMU named Mike Smith as its interim athletic director and announced an 18-member search committee to find its next permanent AD. Before moving to the athletic department, Smith was interim assistant vice president, Finance and Administration, Business and Auxiliary Services.

During a recent appearance at the 220 Quarterback Club’s luncheon, Smith told the group, he will maintain the momentum in the department.

“We will continue to build and enhance those things that help us to be successful in maintaining an outstanding championship program,” Smith said. “More importantly, we want to make sure the department continues to model ‘Excellence with Caring’ on behalf of the university.”

Robinson expressed hope that the search committee he named would work expeditiously to find a new athletic director.

“The AD will work with our coaches and staff to meet and exceed the expectations of fans, friends, supporters, and those entities with compliance authority on and off campus,” Robinson said in a news release.  “I’m looking forward to the search committee doing its work thoroughly and expeditiously to help find the next leader of our athletic program.” 

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