UPDATE | Tressel among 19 applicants; wants to be Akron's interim president

AKRON — Jim Tressel, who’s been urged by local political, business and labor officials to apply for the vacant Youngstown State University presidency, is among 19 applicants for the same job at the University of Akron.

However, in his letter to Akron's board of trustees, Tressel asks that he be selected interim president.

While the board is seeking a permanent successor to its retiring president, Tressel wrote in the Jan. 25 letter: “I recommend an alternative option that meets the urgent demands of our university. Decisive and focused leadership is required to provide the direction necessary to face the challenges and seize the opportunities that will position the University of Akron for future success.”

He also wrote: “A time such as this requires an interim leadership approach to successfully position the university to deliver on an ambitious student success agenda.”

That letter came about three weeks before Randy Dunn announced he was leaving YSU for Southern Illinois University.

The University of Akron provided the list of applicants for the school’s top spot today.

Tressel, who serves as UA’s executive vice president for student success, has declined to discuss his interest in being president of either university.

Talk of Tressel returning to YSU, where he served as its head football coach for 15 years before leaving in 2001 for the same job with Ohio State University, began almost immediately after Dunn announced Feb. 17 that he was leaving YSU as its president.

Today is Dunn’s last day as YSU president.

For the complete story, read Saturday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com

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