We've used the term, drinking through a fire hose a little bit.” That's how Erika Hanson Barnes described her integration to the Arizona interim athletic director role. This after the announcement that Greg Byrne, would be heading to Alabama. “We had worked collectively hand in hand until February 1st,” says Barnes.
Barnes has been a wildcat for a long time, winning a national championship for Arizona softball back in 2001. And a return to the Cats was something she had been eyeing for some time.“I had such a positive experience here,” says Barnes. “I always had visions of coming back and hoping to make an impact on student athletes and contributing to their experience.”
Barnes has decided not to pursue the athletic director position, after being unsure when Byrne's departure was announced. She also hopes his replacement shares his same outlook on collegiate athletics. “If they have the experience and the tools of being an athletic director, and having a passion for just college athletics in general, I think we'd be in a good position,” says Barnes.
Despite the upcoming change to the University, Barnes is confident in Arizona athletics and the direction it's headed. “During times of uncertainty, or change, people can come together and get through the University together. And I think the university is doing that as a whole.”