Ebersol: Qualified USOC CEO candidates obvious
Don't bother hiring an executive search firm to help select the U.S. Olympic Committee's next CEO, Dick Ebersol admonishes. The only qualified candidates should be obvious. As NBC Universal Sports and Olympics chairman, Ebersol knows he has a pulpit to speak out about his disappointment with the USOC - because his employer has poured billions of dollars into the games. He's been one of the most outspoken critics after the embarrassing failure of Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics. The USOC plans to hire a national recruiting firm to find a replacement for embattled acting CEO Stephanie Streeter, who announced last week she's stepping down. Ebersol believes that's a waste of money that would otherwise go to athletes. The firm will just "come up with washing machine manufacturers and insurance agents," he said. Ebersol insisted the only viable candidates are leaders of national governing bodies of the major American sports. They're familiar with top-level sponsors, knowledgeable about developing athletes and already well-respected by their peers around the world. Ebersol mentioned the heads of the American gymnastics and swimming governing bodies without referring to them by name. Steve Penny is president of USA Gymnastics and Chuck Wielgus is executive director of USA Swimming. "When they go into other countries, all the leaders of the other countries in their sports already know them, but more importantly they want to learn from us," Ebersol said Tuesday before he was honored at the Women's Sports Foundation's annual banquet. "Now we have a thing where we already have a readymade, known person coming into that market."