USC athletic director Mike Bohn resigned amid troubling allegations, investigation into workplace culture

University of Southern California athletic director Mike Bohn abruptly resigned on Thursday nearly four years after being hired. Now, new details are emerging regarding the potential reasons for Bohn’s departure.

Bohnn, age 62, began his administrative career in 1984 with Air Force. He worked his way up the executive ladder, first becoming athletic director at Idaho (1998-2003) followed by stints a San Diego State (2003-’05), Colorado (2005-’13) and Cincinnati (2014-’19).

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Following the resignation of USC athletic director Lynn Swann in 2019, Bohn was hired away from Cincinnati. During his tenure as the Trojans’ athletic director, he oversaw the hiring of head coach Lincoln Riley and played a critical role in the program’s move to the Big Ten.

Now, less than a year after USC and UCLA announced they will become full members of the Big Ten in 2024, Bohn has stepped down as the Trojans’ athletic director.

Bohn’s resignation came a day after the Los Angeles Times asked him about internal criticisms of his management style within the athletic department. He was accused of making inappropriate comments towards a female colleague, with specific remarks about her dress, weight and hair.

Multiple USC sources who spoke with Ryan Kartje of The Times said several staffers confronted Bohn about his comments toward the female employee. Despite his colleagues coming forward to him with criticisms for using language that could be described as sexual harassment, Bohn allegedly continued with the behavior.

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Bohn also faced accusations from a half dozen USC officials who raised concerns to the athletic department about his management style. According to Trojans’ staffers who spoke to The Times, Bohn was described as a “poor manager” who skipped meetings he was expected to attend and didn’t appear for important events on USC’s calendar.

In addition, two former Trojans’ coaches told The Times that Bohn’s poor leadership of the athletic department and the lack of direction he led with were primary influences on their decisions to leave.

USC retained Gina Maisto Smith, a Philadelphia-based attorney, to conduct a review of the allegations. During that time, four current and former USC employees raised concerns to the law firm about Bohn’s behavior and comments.

At this time, the Trojans have not named an interim athletic director.

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