Report: Messages from Nebraska decision-makers reveal attempt to retain Trev Alberts

On3 imageby:Nick Schultz03/29/24

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In the lead-up to his departure for Texas A&M, Trev Alberts head from multiple key decision-makers at Nebraska, according to text messages obtained by KETV. Alberts left NU for Texas A&M earlier this month after three years at his alma mater.

Multiple members of Nebraska’s Board of Regents reached out to Alberts prior to his decision, KETV reported. Governor Jim Pillen – a former Nebraska football player – also sent a text expressing his desire for Alberts to stay in Lincoln.

“Just so you know as news has broke Nebraskans are devastated if you leave,” Pillen wrote. “You represent commitment grit and determination. Leadership Nebraska is and loves about you.”

Nebraska was in a period of transition on another front before Alberts left. The university was looking for a new president to replace Ted Carter. That search ended March 20 with the hiring of Dr. Jeff Gold. However, the uncertainty might have played a role in Alberts’ decision, On3’s Andy Staples said.

Tim Clare, a member of the Board of Regents, texted Alberts in the hours before he announced his decision. Clare said the search would end “soon” and pointed out the support Alberts received from the administration.

“I’d just like you to consider that we changed our structure so that you’d report directly to the President; we approved every project you brought before us,” Clare wrote. “We have a void at President, but that will be filled soon. Give us a chance…please call.”

Clare also promised to collaborate with Alberts and Nebraska’s new president on a path forward with administrative support.

“If you stay at NU, I would pledge to work with you and our new President to provide you with what you’re looking for from a structure/operational/leadership standpoint,” Clare wrote. “We will make this work for you!!! Please call me.”

Pillen also sent another message to Alberts about his decision. He said he respected whatever move Alberts made, and said he did his best to make things better if he stayed.

“Just so you know I simply respect you [and] your decision,” Pillen wrote. “Hope you understand that I tried to do everything … to try and fix things”

Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen was ‘disappointed’ in Trev Alberts’ decision to leave for Texas A&M

After Alberts’ decision to leave became official, Pillen released a statement criticizing the university and the lead-up to his departure. It was part of a “call to action” to make a decision on the next president and “appoint permanent leadership.”

“I am deeply disappointed by Trev Alberts’ decision to leave so soon after restating his commitment to Nebraska and I don’t fully understand or know his reasons why,” Pillen wrote. “I do know that the time for reflecting on the failures of University leadership, which led to his decision, must come later. Now is the time to act.

“This morning, I am issuing a call to action to the University of Nebraska Board of Regents. It has been 206 days since Ted Carter announced his departure as president. It is unacceptable that the University’s elected leaders have failed failed during this time to appoint permanent leadership. It is imperative that they act urgently and decisively to end this uncertainty. Without any delay, they should support Interim President Chris Kabourek’s efforts to immediately appoint a new permanent athletic director.”

Nebraska’s Board of Regents its new president on March 20 – one week after Alberts left. That same day the university announced his replacement. Troy Dannen, a Midwest native, is now in as athletics director. He was in his first year in the same role at Washington before joining the Cornhuskers.