University of Michigan Athletic Director Dave Brandon has resigned his post.

U-M made the announcement today at a 1:30 p.m. news conference.

Brandon has been under intense public scrutiny of late due to both on- and off-field problems for the Michigan football program. The team's sub-par performances in recent years, as well as Brandon's department allowing a concussed player to re-enter a game earlier this year have made his seat even hotter.

"Dave feels that it would be in the best interest of our student-athletes, the athletic department and the university community if he moved on to other challenges and allowed the important work of the department and the university to continue without daily distractions," said Mark Schlissel, the university's president.

Schlissel said he would begin searching for Brandon's replacement immediately.

Schlissel appointed former Michigan football player Jim Hackett to serve as an interim athletic director and help him select a permanent replacement. Hackett played for legendary Wolverines coach Bo Schembechler in the 1970s.

Brandon has also been criticized for his handling of student ticket pricing and policies, as well as hiring a skywriter to etch "Go Blue" in the skies around East Lansing last football season.

The latest public outcry has come over emails Brandon purportedly sent in response to angry U-M football fans, many of them having a condescending and unprofessional tone.

Thousands of U-M students signed a petition earlier this season calling for Brandon's dismissal.