Bill Howard: Impersonation Alert!!!

Blow the whistle loud for the Rev. William Howard, chair of the Rutgers Board of Governors.  Some nefarious evil-doer out there in the Internet is circulating two emails that purport to be the writings of the Rev. Howard but, surely, they are too dull-witted to have been penned by so important a personage in the Rutgers hierarchy.  Tell us you didn’t write them, Billy!

The first of the two blatantly wrong-headed emails is dated August 27th and it purports to be an attempt at an op-ed by the Rev. Howard.  We’ll include bits of it here because it’s doubtful any newspaper will run something this, well, boring and self-serving.  The author — we know it is not the Rev. Howard, so we will use the neutral “author” —  claims:

* It was…disturbing to read board member George Zoffinger’s recent op-ed, which impugned his peers and all but accused them of being careless and fiscally irresponsible

We hope Zoffinger in fact accused them (no “all but” about it) because they are careless and irresponsible.

This soon is followed by a whole bunch of 5th grade mud-slinging at George Zoffinger…and then the author moves in for a summary:

* My colleagues on the board agree that the university’s academic quality and reputation have improved during the same period that we have succeeded in athletics.  We agree that the university’s athletic program has brought credit not only to Rutgers but also to our entire state.

Uh…excuse us…it’s wonderful that you all agree that academic quality has improved but it hasn’t. It is shocking — and indeed does it not prove Zoffinger’s point that you are dimwitted toadies? — to claim that academics are up when by any objective measure Rutgers continues to slip in the rankings.  Now tied with Texas A & M, Rutgers is well on its way to being the next Louisville.  And that is not bringing “credit” to the state.  Were you operating in the private sector, the foreclosure papers would be stamped on your foreheads and the sale on the courthouse steps would be in progress.

* The people of New Jersey should know that their state university’s governing board members are talented men and women who recognize the stake that the people of our state have in Rutgers‘ well-being, and they strive to honor the public trust in every decision they make.

Really?  Could have fooled us.  Truth is, we still think you are jocksniffing cretins and, as for talent, it’s well hidden on the BoG.

Impersonation instance #2 is a document — also dated 8/27 — that purports to be an email from “Bill” Howard (doesn’t the intimacy make you go fuzzy?) to George Zoffinger, where “Bill” seems to want Zoffinger to resign from the BoG because Zoffinger has hurt Bill’s feelings by suggesting that Bill and his cronies on the board are incompetent wretches.  [You go, Zoffinger! Pardon our interruption.]

But the statement that jumps out in this email is the following:

* At our September 10th Special Board meeting, we expect the president will provide the Board with detailed information on all the issues that have been precipitated by the success of our football program. And later in the fall, the president’s special review committee on these matters is expected to issue its report. I presume a program of corrective action, if needed, will be aggressively pursued following these events.

The “success” of the football program?  A Big East bottom feeder? But, wait, “Bill” expects that Slick McCormick will actually present a plan that makes sense regarding paying for the expansion and “Bill” further expects the president’s special review committee will issue a report that fixes all ills.  We know no human being could be as dumb as this “Bill” pretends to be because every sentient being inside New Jersey knows all McCormick and Mulcahy are trying to do is cover up, cover up, cover up.  There are no plans, reports are whitewashes at best, and all this is obvious as the Trentonization of Rutgers steams forward.

That’s why we have this impersonator cornered. The chair of the Rutgers board of governors could not be this dimwitted and this much of a lackey, could he?


9 Responses to Bill Howard: Impersonation Alert!!!

  1. ferdek says:

    Can’t you folks do a decent piece of reporting/commenting without using vulgar terms like “jock sniffing?” I would expect that kind of crudeness from the drunken red faced fans not from Rutgers 1000. Come on get your act together and clean it up so the message is not diminished by sinking to the level of the football fanatics both on the BoG and in the Legislature. Also, can you folks start identifying indicators of the decline in the academic quality at RU. Solely relying on the Forbes/US News surveys is not enough. Specifics please…

  2. ferdek says:

    your clock is off by 4 hours!!! It is now 8:44am

  3. Grumpy Alum says:

    The mean SAT score of 2007 (1196) were down on the four previous years (a high of 1217 in 2005 – BEFORE football exploded), and even though scores are falling across the USA, they have dropped by more than the national and state mean at Rutgers. This should be comprehensive evidence that Rutgers is getting academically less competitive, not more so, regardless of what charlatans like the Rev. Howard say.

    You can find the information on the Rutgers factbook site at:

  4. cody says:

    Exemplifying RU’s “bunker mentality,” Howard wholly ignores, and offers no factual response to, any of the many instances of fiscal mismanagement and irregularities highlighted in the widespread media coverage, the recent SOS (Save our Sports) response to RU’s Media Statement, and mentioned in Zoffinger’s Op-Ed. Howard instead offers the self-serving, unsupported conclusion that there is “absolutely no basis for questioning the university’s integrity or the soundness of its governance.”

    Given the events over the last two years it’s mind boggling to think that any report given to the board by the president concerning the athletic department would be anything but glowing as to all the decisions made since cutting of the six Olympic sports. Anything else would be an indictment on himself and the board.

    It’s also a travesty that the board feels compelled to force anyone who dissents with the majority view off the board, especially given the facts over the last two years and at the same time assign the biggest athletic booster to oversee the internal investagation of the athletic department finances.

    ferdek, I also agree that the name calling detracts from the seriousness of the debate.

    I think, yes just an opinion, that the BoG could gain back some credibility if they just admitted cutting the sports saved nothing and just reinstate them. It would be a good start.

  5. John Lister says:

    At our September 10th Special Board meeting, we expect the president will provide the Board with detailed information on all the issues that have been precipitated by the success of our football program.

    I look forward to it. If it includes information about how Rutgers is going to pay for its stadium mess, so much the better!

    But if Howard is a “lackey”, who on the BoG is driving the Football above everything else attitude?

  6. cody says:


    Good luck with that. According to their schedule (link below) they show it as a closed meeting except for the first five minutes. You would think the information being presented would dictate an open meeting in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act, N.J.S.A. 10:4-6 et seq. which provides for public notice of Board meetings and gives the public the opportunity to see and hear the Board conduct its business, not to mention the customary practice by the board.

    The fact is this BoG does not want to hear anything from the public and they probably do not want the public to know all the detailed information. My guess is they will provide sound bites later. Maybe if people complain they will open the meeting.

    BoG Schedule:

  7. Chuck says:

    Looks like they’re pushing the stadium expansion through by secret. I think they may be trying to find money to fund the stadium from within the university. Whatever, it’s going to happen. They’re so dead set in favor of it and there won’t be accountability until the ENTIRE bureaucracy is replaced. The impossibility of that outcome is reason enough to just hope football comes through.

    Interesting stats on SAT scores. Actually, I think they changed the SAT starting March, 2005 and made the verbal a lot easier by eliminating analogies (hardest part) and shortening the readings (pathetic) [if this is true I would have scored 80 points higher on the verbal alone]. I have also heard that math is more learnable now and not as abstract as it once was (I’m not sure I support this, intelligence matters). So at a lot of schools there was a huge spike in scores from 2005 to 2006 and it’s steadied ever since. For Rutgers to actually see DECREASES in those numbers is indeed troubling.

    Well, at least the run the professional schools here okay.

  8. Grumpy Alum says:

    Well, what a combination. A losing football team, plummeting rankings and a decaying campus! No wonder Howard endorsed McCormick’s bonus. And seriously, no wonder they’re keeping the meeting private. They are simply ashamed to ram through an extra $30 Million worth of borrowing with taxpayers and students present.

  9. John Lister says:

    Thanks Cody for pointing that out. I’m sure that when I looked, most of the special meeting was open.

    By the way, has anyone else noticed that the meeting is at Howard’s church? Is Rutgers paying the church for use of its facilities? If so, why? Doesn’t Rutgers Newark have a conference room available for the BoG to use? (I agree with the Governors meeting at all the Rutgers campuses, not just New Brunswick, but the meetings should be on Rutgers campuses!)

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