Penn State’s acting athletic director will stay on the job as long as Rodney Erickson remains the school’s president.
Erickson said in response to a question Wednesday at a Penn State student forum that Dave Joyner was doing an excellent job at athletics. The football team, under the direction of first-year coach Bill O’Brien, is 1-2 and will meet Temple on Saturday.
Erickson has said he plans to step down when his contract expires in June 2014. The search for his replacement will begin in November.
It was appropriate, Erickson said, for his successor to decide whether to go in another direction with athletics.
Joyner replaced Tim Curley last November after Curley was charged with perjury and failure to report a crime in connection with a sexual abuse allegation against retired defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky.
Curley, who faces trial in January, has denied the charges. He is on administrative leave.
"Dr. Joyner has provided excellent leadership for our programs" and monitoring athletic integrity programs, Erickson said at the forum. "I want to have continuity there."
Joyner has said since being appointed acting athletic director that he would stay on as long as desired. Joyner joined Erickson and other administrators at the student forum Wednesday. He said later that he was happy with Erickson’s decision "because I want to continue to help," he said. "I love this university, I believe in it."
The employment agreement for Joyner is worth $396,000 a year. The agreement calls for the school to give Joyner 30 days’ notice before parting ways.
Joyner said he only learned of Erickson’s vote of confidence after a friend passed along a story of an interview Erickson had Tuesday in New York with Bloomberg News, which first reported the decision. Penn State leaders are in the midst of conducting interviews with national media outlets in New York as part of a public relations campaign.