A look at potential candidates for Colorado's vacant athletic director position:

Ceal Barry

Current job: Interim athletic director/senior woman administrator, University of Colorado

Why she's a candidate: The legendary women's basketball coach has 30 years of experience at CU. She has been an administrator in the athletic department since April 1, 2005. One of Barry's strengths is her dedication to student athletes. She also has some background in and an understanding of budget issues.

The downside: Barry does not have the strong business background that chancellor Phil DiStefano said he would be looking for in the next athletic director.

Tom Bowen

Current job: Athletic director, University of Memphis

Why he's a candidate: He is a Denver native and has ties to new CU football coach Mike MacIntyre. In fact, it was Bowen who hired MacIntyre at San Jose State in 2010. During his eight years at SJSU, Bowen led the department's fund-raising efforts and led the department to budget surpluses four years in a row. He's currently working on balancing the budget at Memphis.

The downside: He's barely unpacked in Memphis. He was hired April 16, 2012, and moved into his office last June. Simply out of loyalty to the Tigers, he may not entertain another job at this time, especially with Memphis transitioning to the Big East Conference in July.


Rocko DeLuca

Current job: Associate athletic director, University of Massachusetts

Why he's a candidate: In the three years he has been at UMass, he has spearheaded fundraising efforts. In 2011, he started a $33 million fundraising campaign and 18 months into the four-year project, more than 40 percent of the goal had been met. Prior to going to UMass, he was an assistant AD at Colorado. While at CU, he played a key role in several fund-raising ventures, including securing a seven-figure gift that helped pay for the practice facility at Coors Events Center. The Greeley native and CU graduate also worked for the Denver Broncos from 1999-2002.

The downside: Despite his experience, he has not been the leader of an athletic department during his career.

Rick George

Current job: President of Business Operations, Texas Rangers

Why he's a candidate: He was an assistant athletic director at CU from 1987-91. Since then, he has worked at Vanderbilt, the Fore!Kids Foundation, the PGA Tour and the Rangers. He has developed a proven track record for raising funds and generating new revenue while working at Fore!Kids and the PGA Tour. As former President of the Champions Tour, he helped increase revenues and sponsorships for the Tour's events.

The downside: He has not worked in a college setting since leaving Vanderbilt in 1998.

Chris May

Current job: Athletic director, St. Louis University

Why he's a candidate: He has strong ties to Boulder, having earned his MBA from CU in 1988 and working for more than 20 years in the Buffaloes' athletic department. He guided the "Your Team" campaign at CU, where ticket sales and fund raising were priorities. He also played a role in the $46 million expansion of Folsom Field a decade ago. He has been at St. Louis since 2008. During his tenure, the Billikens have enjoyed success on the field, while fundraising has been better than ever in school history.

The downside: May has never guided a BCS program, and has never led a department that has a football program.

George Solich

Current job: Director of Western Golf Association/CU booster

Why he's a candidate: More so than anyone on this list, he has an extensive business experience that might be exactly what CU wants. A CU graduate, he made his fortune in the energy industry. He formed Cordillera Energy in 2000 and sold it for $245 million three years later. Then, he formed Cordillera Energy II and solid that in 2008 for $1.025 billion. In 2012, he sold Cordillera Energy III for $3.1 billion. Solich has donated millions to the CU athletic department and has been involved in each of the last three CU football coaching hires.

The downside: He doesn't have any experience running an athletic department.

-- Brian Howell, Buffzone.com