FIU athletic director receives three-year contract extension

Thursday, September 6, 2018

By Jenna Smith/Staff Writer



President Mark B. Rosenberg has announced a three-year contract extension for Executive Director of Sports and Entertainment Pete Garcia.

His contract will be extended until July 31, 2021. It was previously announced that Garcia’s contract would not be renewed.

“We wanted to keep the momentum going after all that our student-athletes have accomplished under his leadership, and we are thrilled to have him for another three years,” said Rosenberg.

Garcia arrived at FIU in Oct. 2006, and within the few days of his arrival, he was responsible for managing the outcome of the fight between the Panthers football team and the University of Miami.

He also led the transition of the Sun Belt Conference to Conference USA in 2012 during the NCAA conference realignment.

After five years, he was given the new title of “Executive Director of Sports and Entertainment.”

In 2015, Frank Pena, member of the FIU Alumni Association requested for Garcia to be fired.

The program was under criticism following the firing of head football coach Mario Cristobal back in 2012.

Cristobal, now as the head coach for Oregon Ducks, was responsible for the Panthers’ first-ever bowl game in 2011.

The men’s basketball program was scrutiny as well with the hiring and firing of head coach Isaiah Thomas. FIU was later hit with NCAA penalties regarding academic failures.

Women’s basketball head coach Marlin Chinn, another hire by Garcia, tried having a romantic relationship with one of the players on the 2015-2016 squad.

FIU agreed to extend his contract until 2018 when Garcia also decided to retire.

Despite struggling in past years, the Panthers’ executive director of sports and entertainment has found recent success.

Garcia hired head football coach Butch Davis who led the team to an 8-5 season. Davis led the Panthers to their first bowl game since 2011.

This past year, the men’s soccer team finished their regular season as one of only two undefeated programs.

The Panthers managed to reach the second round of the NCAA tournament.

“I would like to thank President Rosenberg and our Board of Trustees for their continued support,” said Garcia.

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