Maryland has hired Zack Bolno – well-known to local sports media following stints with the Washington Wizards and Redskins – to oversee its media relations.
Maryland said Bolno – the Wizards’ director of basketball communications this past season – will head the media relations staff “as well as designing and implementing strategic communication plans.”
Maryland is getting an established player. Bolno had two stints with the Wizards, and one with Dan Snyder and the Redskins (April 2008 through August 2010). Prior to his return to the Wizards, he founded his own public relations and consulting group.
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With the recent elimination of seven athletic teams, Maryland has 20 remaining. In recent years, the school has seen revenue declines in football, men’s basketball, and in fundraising. Part of Bolno’s task, clearly, will be to highlight the school’s athletic positives and invigorate the fan base.
"He has a tremendous professional background and strong local media ties,” athletic director Kevin Anderson said of Bolno.
Bolno’s hiring comes in a transition period. In the past two years, Maryland has hired a new president, athletic director, men’s basketball coach and football coach. Each succeeded people who had long runs at Maryland. So this is a new era that is now being defined.
Bolno replaces Doug Dull, who is starting his own sports communications firm. Dull had been at Maryland for nine years. Maryland is also looking to replace Shawn Nestor, who recently departed after working in media relations for football coach Randy Edsall last season.