Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content NCHC commissioner, former USOC head Jim Scherr under consideration for European Games job

By Joe Paisley Published: May 20, 2013

National Collegiate Hockey Conference commissioner Jim Scherr is in negotiations to become the chief operating officer of the inaugural 2015 European Games in Baku, the capital city of Azerbaijan.

Scherr said there was no deadline on a decision but said it would be "in the interest of everyone involved that it would be made sooner rather than later."

European media reported he would take the new position later this month.

"That announcement is premature and incorrect at this time," Scherr said, adding that negotiations are ongoing.

Scherr did not rule out holding both his current position as league commissioner and COO of the Games.

"That would be up to (the NCHC Board of) Directors to decide," he said.

The NCHC released a statement on the development..

"He (Scherr) has been forthcoming with information regarding a competing bid for his services," the league said via email. "Since this is an internal personnel matter, the conference will offer no further comment at this time."

His base salary is reportedly $150,000.

Scherr was the chief executive of the United States Olympic Committee from 2005-09, after serving as interim head for two years. He also worked as the organization's chief of sport performance. He was executive director of USA Wrestling from 1990- 2000.

The former Olympic wrestler (1988 Seoul) became the first commissioner of the new NCHC, based in Colorado Springs, in Jan. 2012 when he signed a 4 +-year contract.

Scherr recently led the NCHC meetings in Fla., where the league named the officers for its board of directors.

"It was great to get everyone in the same place and on the same page as we prepare for our inaugural season," Scherr said recently. "We are just a couple of months from dropping the puck on opening weekend and I could not be more excited to get the season under way."

The league formed in July 2011 with six founding members: Colorado College, Denver, Miami, Minnesota-Duluth, Nebraska-Omaha, and North Dakota. St. Cloud State and Western Michigan joined on Sept. 22.

Recent conference realignments started with the announcement of Penn State's Division I program in 2010, which prompted the other Big Ten schools to form a six-team conference that begins play in October. That league will include Penn State and former Central Collegiate Hockey Association schools Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State and past Western Collegiate Hockey Association members Minnesota and Wisconsin.

The moves prompted remaining schools to form a new version of the 61-year-old WCHA. That led to the demise of the CCHA, which was founded in 1971.

The European Games would feature up to 15,000 athletes from 49 countries competing in at least 20 sports.

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