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UPDATE: Gee Explains Sudden Retirement
COLUMBUS -- Did OSU force Gordon Gee to retire as president?
Dana Jay from our sister station in Columbus was there today as Gee responded to questions about his anti-Catholic jokes and why he's leaving the highest-paid university job in the country.
One of Gee's answers was his age, saying, "I run the university like a 36-year-old. I'm 69."
Another reason was due to future projects at OSU, which Gee adds, "I believe the university is in a very strong position and it needs to have continued strong leadership."
A third reason was a desire to just move on,"the last thing I want to do is be queen for a day."
Gee says his decision was cemented while on a family cruise.
Board of Trustees Chairman Robert Schottenstein says that Gee leaves in his wake a legacy to be proud of. "This was about honoring and respecting a decision to retire after an extraordinary commitment by this man to give his life to higher education."
Ohio State President Gee Announces Retirement
COLUMBUS (AP) -- Gordon Gee, rehired by Ohio State University in 2007 to great fanfare, boldly declared, "This is Ohio State's time."
He made good on the boast by reshaping the university into a leading academic institution. Yet Gee, also famous for painful verbal gaffes, couldn't stop saying the wrong thing at the wrong time.
Gee, 69, announced his retirement Tuesday after his latest remarks jabbing Roman Catholics and Notre Dame became public last week. Even then, he couldn't play it straight at the end of a hastily called news conference.
"I've only got a month to ruin the university," he joked. "I've got to get at it." Gee said the furor over the remarks was only one of several factors that led to his decision.
He also cited his age and the start of a long-term planning process at the university, which includes a trustee meeting Wednesday to talk about Ohio State's future.
Gee's remarks, jokingly referring to "those damn Catholics" at Notre Dame and poking fun at the academic quality of other schools, were first reported last week by The Associated Press. Ohio State at the time called them unacceptable and said it had placed Gee on a "remediation plan" to change his behavior.
Gee said he didn't regret the way he conducted himself as a higher education leader. "I have regrets when I have said things that I shouldn't have said, but I have no regrets about having a sense of humor and having a thick skin and enjoying life," Gee said.
OSU Athletics Official React to Gee's Retirement
COLUMBUS (AP) -- Ohio State University athletics officials are reacting to President Gordon Gee's retirement announcement.
OSU Athletics Director Gene Smith, in a statement, thanked Gee "for what he has done for me as a person and for his contributions to higher education and in particular The Ohio State University."
Football coach Urban Meyer said "it is hard to put into words the respect and love I have for President Gee." Meyer's statement said Gee's "leadership brought me home to this great university and to this great state of Ohio."
Basketball coach Thad Matta said Gee "has always gone above and beyond the call of duty to help build our program."
The 69-year-old Gee announced his retirement Tuesday after his latest remarks jabbing Roman Catholics and the University of Notre Dame became public.
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