Kevin Warren reportedly president candidate

The Chicago Bears seek for a brand new group president is progressing with Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren rising as one of many group’s prime candidates, according to ESPN.

That info grew to become public Thursday, with ESPN reporting Warren is a finalist who met with the group in-person in regards to the job.

The Bears proceed looking for a successor to present group president and CEO Ted Phillips, who introduced in September he would retire on the finish of February. The group, nonetheless, wouldn’t verify Warren’s candidacy or present element on the standing of their search.

“We have not set a timeline for announcing Ted Phillips’ successor,” the Bears mentioned in an announcement Thursday. “Our search team has cast a wide net, spoke to many outstanding candidates and looks forward to introducing our next President and CEO at the process’s conclusion.”

In September, when requested by the Tribune what he can be in search of in a brand new group president, Bears chairman George McCaskey had a bullet-pointed listing of qualities he was prioritizing.

“Leadership, vision, humility, consensus building,” McCaskey mentioned. “You look at the qualities of outstanding leaders and we think we’re going to be able to bring in an exceptional candidate to succeed Ted and lead the Bears.”

McCaskey additionally famous that the franchise’s wide-net searches earlier this year for a brand new basic supervisor and a brand new coach additionally supplied helpful perception to assist them set a brand new course for the group.

“One benefit of that type of experience is you get a little intel on how other organizations work,” McCaskey mentioned. “So that’s helpful. I’ll leave it at that.”

On Saturday, two Big Ten groups will play within the semifinals of the College Football Playoff with Michigan dealing with TCU within the Fiesta Bowl and Ohio State enjoying Georgia within the Peach Bowl. Warren, nonetheless, might quickly be shifting his focus if a union with the Bears had been to materialize.

Warren grew to become Big Ten commissioner in 2020 after a 14-year stint as an government within the Minnesota Vikings entrance office. He was the Vikings chief working officer from 2015-2019 and earlier than that served as the chief vice president of authorized affairs and chief administrative officer.

He was integral within the Vikings’ efforts to build a brand new stadium with the group opening U.S. Bank Stadium in 2016. As the Bears pursue a possible new stadium enterprise in Arlington Heights, Warren’s experience and expertise in an analogous course of would show helpful.

As Big Ten commissioner, Warren has helped the convention’s efforts to develop its footprint and generate income. In August, the Big Ten introduced a landmark seven-year media rights take care of CBS, Fox and NBC that can start in 2023 with an estimated price of greater than $1 billion per year. Warren has additionally aided the convention’s efforts so as to add UCLA and Southern Cal in 2024.

The Big Ten launched an announcement Thursday relating to the reported interview.

“Over the course of three decades in professional and collegiate sports, Big Ten Commissioner Kevin Warren regularly receives unique opportunities and requests for his expertise from leaders across a variety of industries ranging from professional sports ownership groups to private equity firms,” the convention mentioned in its assertion.

“The Commissioner utilizes each occurrence to listen, learn and assist every stakeholder in the most appropriate and effective manner. The Commissioner remains focused on the Big Ten Conference, its 14 member institutions and over 10,000 student-athletes in both regular season and postseason play.”

In October, one distinguished NFL supply highlighted Warren as a candidate who needs to be enticing to the Bears given his lengthy observe report within the NFL and his expertise with the stadium-building course of in Minneapolis.

“It would make too much sense,” the supply mentioned.

At the outset of their seek for a brand new president, each McCaskey and Phillips confused the Bears wouldn’t have a slim focus in in search of candidates with solely a business background, but additionally didn’t see a have to have a group president with established soccer experience both.

Phillips has suggested McCaskey to discover a candidate who has confirmed able to making powerful selections frequently.

“That’s very important,” Phillips mentioned. “Someone who can handle a lot of different balls in the air on a daily basis. Because every day is different. (You need) omeone who understands what it means to be a Bear. Culture here is important. If you don’t have the right fit, you can be the smartest person on earth but won’t get it done.

“(You also need) someone who’s able to deal with different personalities — from politicians to business leaders to the media. It’s not easy. So we need someone who can understand all those different dynamics.”

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