On August 8, 2013 at 11:43 A.M., Senior Associate Athletic Director Jeff Hawkins submitted a Letter to the Editor of The Register Guard regarding a quote attributed to him.
The letter has yet to be published, despite the fact Mr. Hawkins appeared on the front page of The Register Guard three times in less than a week. There have been numerous letters published regarding the Hatfield-Dowlin Complex since its opening.
Per The Register Guard, “Because of the volume of mail, all letters cannot be published.”
Here is the full text of Mr. Hawkins' Letter to the Editor:
A comment I made during a tour of the University of Oregon’s new Hatfield-Dowlin Football Complex has been taken out of context, and I feel I owe the members of my university and this community an explanation.
When I said “We are the University of Nike,” I meant it as a metaphor for the shared ideals and passions that I believe exist between the UO athletic department and those of Nike, whose founder, Phil Knight, and his wife, Penny, have made extraordinary contributions to both academics and athletics at the UO. After all, the birthplace of Nike was on the playing fields of Oregon. The invention of the waffle track shoe by Oregon Coach Bill Bowerman revolutionized sports performance forever. Oregon student-athlete Phil Knight transformed those ideas into a sports-marketing empire. Both men exemplify the innovation and devotion to excellence that I associate with the UO. Both went on to become great philanthropists to the university and global game-changers.
The Ducks are innovative and achievement oriented, driven to excellence. Students and student-athletes see us as ahead of the curve, smart, successful, cool, and fun. I see these characteristics as true not only of athletics, but of the university as a whole.
I’ve been part of this great institution for almost 13 years, and I feel passionately about the UO. It’s my greatest hope that my 10-year old daughter will attend here someday. Rest assured, when she does, she will be coming for the UO’s outstanding academic programs.
Senior Associate Athletic Director of Football Administration and Operations
University of Oregon