SDSU athletic director steps down


San Diego State University’s athletic director stepped down Thursday amid an inquiry into his travel expense records, the school announced.

“It is my sad duty to announce that Jeff Schemmel has resigned as athletic director, effective today,” SDSU President Stephen Weber said. “I have accepted his resignation. Jeff and I agree that this is in the best interest of our athletic program and San Diego State University.”

SDSU began investigating Schemmel’s travel records after The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that he had sought reimbursement from the university for a trip to Alabama in January to meet up with a woman with whom he was allegedly having an affair.

As part of her divorce case, the woman testified that she had met up with Schemmel on multiple occasions, the newspaper reported.

In a statement, Weber said Schemmel’s departure was a “setback for our athletic program, but one we will overcome.”

Weber said SDSU will begin a national search immediately to find a replacement. Weber said he hopes to identify a new athletic director by March 1.

“I want to thank Jeff for his service to the university and for his willingness to do the right thing under these difficult circumstances,” Weber said.

“I believe our athletic program is headed in the right direction for which Jeff deserves considerable credit. This includes some great hires, several conference championships and increases in the graduation rates of our student athletes.”

Schemmel, who was hired by SDSU in 2005, earned $257,000 a year as the university’s athletic director. He had recently gotten a contract extension through 2013.