Tag Archives: University of Texas

University of Texas Announces Advisory Committee for AD Search

In addition to paying a reported $200,000 to hire Korn/Ferry International, an executive search firm, to assist with its athletic director search, University of Texas has announced an advisory committee that will assist with the search:

    • Steve Hicks, vice chair of the Board of Regents, one of the board’s athletics liaisons, and owner and executive chairman of Capstar Partners LLC, a private investment firm.
    • Robert Stillwell, member of the Board of Regents, one of the board’s athletics liaisons, retired partner at Baker Botts LLP and an original director of Mesa Petroleum Co.
    • Michael Clement, accounting professor, McCombs School of Business at UT Austin, and faculty representative to the Men’s and Women’s Athletics Councils.
    • Charles Matthews, former vice president and general counsel of Exxon Mobil, current president of the Texas Exes.
    • Robert Rowling, former member of the Board of Regents and owner and chairman of TRT Holdings Inc.
    • Charles Tate, chairman of Capital Royalty, former member of the executive committee of the university’s Commission of 125.
    • Pamela Willeford, former U.S. ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein and former chair of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

 

Kristi A. Dosh is an attorney and founder of BusinessofCollegeSports.com. Her latest book on the business of college football, Saturday Millionaires, is available now. Visit SaturdayMillionaires.com for retailers and a sneak peak at the first chapter! Follow her on Twitter: @SportsBizMiss.

Texas

New Texas Athletic Director Might Have Tough Job But Won’t Be Strapped For Cash

TexasJust how plum is the athletic director job at University of Texas?

Former acting commissioner of the Big 12 Chuck Neinas says, “it’s like going to the University of Heaven.”

Apparently Neinas’ version of heaven is a giant cash box in the sky. Neinas says the most important part of an athletic director’s job revolves around money, which is why the Texas job should attract the nation’s very best.

When I was researching for my book, Saturday Millionaires: How Winning Football Builds Winning Colleges, I spoke to search firms across the country about what makes a good athletic director. The two responses I received most frequently were someone who is a good fund raiser and someone who has the ability to hire the next football coach.

Texas’ next athletic director won’t have to worry about money. Texas annually has the highest revenue in intercollegiate athletics. For fiscal year 2012 (which encompasses the 2011-2012 school year), Texas reported revenue of $163 million on it’s NCAA disclosure, 15 percent higher than the second-highest earning athletic department, Ohio State University. And no, it’s not just the cash from Longhorn Network that sets the Longhorns apart. It’s the fans, and more particularly the donors.

Total revenue from ticket sales and contributions to Longhorn athletics totaled $100.0 million in fiscal year 2012. The average amongst all public FBS programs was just $26 million. For further comparison, the rest of the top five were Texas A&M ($88.4 million), Michigan ($80.9 million), Florida ($69.7 million), and Oklahoma ($68.9 million).

If there’s anywhere money isn’t an issue, it’s Texas.

What remains to be seen is whether the new athletic director will have replacing Mack Brown at the top of his to-do list. Will Brown outlast outgoing athletic director DeLoss Dodds who’s set to step down in late 2014?

After a 1-2 start, including losses to BYU and Ole Miss, the Longhorns have rebounded to 3-2 with a win at home against Kansas State and a win squeaked out in Ames last weekend. This weekend, however, marks perhaps the most important game of the season: the Red River Rivalry. Oklahoma has taken the last three games, but Dodds isn’t willing to commit to this year’s matchup being a make-or-break game for Brown.

“It’s an important game. It’s always an important game. … How that impacts the rest of our lives or the rest of the world, I don’t know the answer to that,” Dodds told the Dallas Morning News.

Even if Brown survives Dodds’ remaining tenure, the next athletic director could one day be called upon to replace him (Brown’s current contract runs through 2020). Given the current climate in Austin, expect the athletic director search to focus on someone who has made successful coaching hires elsewhere.

The only question left is who will hire that athletic director. There’s currently a power struggle between Bill Powers, president of University of Texas, and the Board of Regents, several of whom would love to add Powers to the list of folks to be replaced in Austin. For the time being, he’ll conduct the search for a new athletic director, but don’t be surprised if the Board of Regents finds a way into the conversation.

 

Kristi A. Dosh is an attorney and founder of BusinessofCollegeSports.com. Her latest book on the business of college football, Saturday Millionaires, is available now. Visit SaturdayMillionaires.com for retailers and a sneak peak at the first chapter! Follow her on Twitter: @SportsBizMiss.

Preparing for a post-O’Bannon world

Stewart Mandel has a piece out today on SI.com describing the range of urgency athletics administrators are feeling regarding the O’Bannon v. NCAA case currently making its way through the courts.  For those of you who haven’t kept up with the case, I wrote about it in more detail here.  Essentially, former UCLA men’s basketball star Ed O’Bannon and his co-plaintiffs are suing the NCAA, and other defendants, for not sharing the revenue generated in part by student-athletes both while they are in school (e.g. TV) and afterwards (e.g. video games, archive footage).  If the O’Bannon plaintiffs were to win, or even settle the case in their favor, the current structure of college athletics will be forever altered.

Mr. Mandel profiled University of Southern California athletic director Pat Haden’s concern that the case is by no means a slam dunk for the NCAA, and how he and his colleagues should be preparing for the aftermath if it were to lose the case.  I appreciated Mr. Haden’s comments.  Up until now the little we’ve heard from administrators are the doomsday scenarios spouted off by the likes of Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delaney, who claimed his schools would rather de-emphasize sports and join Division III than go along with any type of pay for play scenario.

Mr. Haden is a lawyer.  He’s been reading the articles from legal analysts and scholars.  He knows the NCAA is vulnerable and the case is soft.  More importantly, he knows the stakes have never been higher.  It reminds me of this Family Guy/Star Wars clip, with Mr. Haden as Darth Vader and NCAA president Mark Emmert as the Empire’s henchman talking about the “invulnerable” Death Star (current NCAA structure).  Mr. Haden is right to be concerned.  He is right to be asking questions.  He is also right to be taking proactive steps to address the possible outcomes, or perhaps look at acceptable settlement options.

The contrast to Mr. Haden is University of Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds.  He was also quoted in Mr. Mandel’s piece, but with much less concern or urgency than Mr. Haden.  Mr. Dodds seemed to think he and other athletics administrators have “more immediate things to worry about,” and “have no control over (the case).”  In my view, nothing could be further from the truth.  The case exists only because of how the NCAA and its members (of which the University of Texas and Mr. Dodds is one) have constructed the current college athletics model.  If those in power change the model, the case goes away.  And while Mr. Dodds might simply be one person in a massive bureaucracy, he leads arguably the most powerful athletic department in the country, and SI.com recently named him the 8th most powerful person in college athletics (notice Ed O’Bannon ranks #4).  My guess is others will listen when he speaks.

Last week much of the country’s attention was fixed on the Supreme Court’s hearing of two significant same-sex marriage cases.  Reading through much of the post-argument commentary from both sides, it seemed apparent that at some point in the future, though perhaps not as a direct result of these two cases, same-sex marriage will be legal across the country.  I get that same feel about the O’Bannon case and paying student-athletes.  It may not be this case or right now, but at some point in the future college athletes will be paid.  The only question is when the new era is ushered in, and how.  Pat Haden recognizes this and wants to take action; good for him.

Follow Daniel on Twitter at @DanielHare.

Will Texas and Texas A&M be Required by Law to Play Football?

Guest author: Christian Dennie, Esq.

Following Texas A&M University’s (“A&M”) departure to the SEC, sports fans all across Texas missed out on the annual University of Texas (“Texas”) v. A&M football game.  There is no certainty whether the game will be played again, at least in the near future.  As a result, State Rep. Ryan Guillen of Rio Grande City introduced a bill seeking to require the two universities to compete against one another. House Bill 778 does not indicate when the game would be played, but does offer penalties levied against the institution refusing to play in the annual game.  The restriction recommended is the loss of athletic scholarships.

 

This post originally appeared on bgsfirm.com.

 

300px-Texas_football_Baylor_2006_warmups

Who’s Making Money in Big 12 Football?

After writing about the football finances of the SECBig Ten, ACC, and Pac-10, it’s the Big 12’s turn.  The numbers are drawn from schools’ reports to the U.S. Department of Education on the state of their athletic departments’ finances for July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010. See the note at the end for more details on the data.

Texas, of course, is in a league of its own when it comes to football revenue. In fact, they lead the nation. They’re a whopping $21 million ahead of the highest revenue-generating school we’ve covered thus far, Alabama:

  Football Revenue
University of Texas $93,942,815.00
University of Oklahoma $58,295,888.00
University of Nebraska $49,928,228.00
Texas A&M $41,915,428.00
Oklahoma State $32,787,498.00
University of Colorado $26,233,929.00
Texas Tech $26,201,009.00
University of Missouri $25,378,066.00
Iowa State $19,974,924.00
University of Kansas $17,885,176.00
Kansas State $17,570,624.00
Baylor University $14,355,322.00

For those keeping score between conferences, here’s where the Big 12 falls: Continue reading

Did Texas Tattle on Oregon for Suspicious Recruiting?

Thursday night, Charles Robinson of Yahoo! Sports reported that University of Oregon expense records show money going to two men who are tied to “multiple recruits who signed letters of intent with the school.”

For those unfamiliar with how this aspect of recruiting works in college football, scouting services are run all over the country by people who are not affiliated directly with any one school, or at least that’s how it’s supposed to work.  They act as outside scouts for programs who can’t send their own recruiters to see the athlete in person. Often, they put together tapes and other information on recruits and provide it to colleges who might be interested in the player.

According to Oregon coach Chip Kelly, “Most programs purchase recruiting services.”  This in itself is not against NCAA regulations.

What is against NCAA regulations is paying someone to influence a player’s decision on where to play. These are the allegations now surrounding Oregon’s relationship with a man named Willie Lyles.

Oregon financial documents show a $25,000 payment to Lyles just days after highly-touted recruit Lache Seastrunk signed a letter of intent with the school. The payment was made for recruiting services, but far exceeds the $5,000 a handful of football coaches polled by ESPN yesterday say that recruiting services typically charge. In the previous two seasons, Oregon paid Lyles $16,500 or his recruiting services.

Perhaps most surprised by the news was Lache Seastrunk’s mother, Evelyn. She told ESPN, “Willie said he was a trainer. Now Oregon says he’s a scout? Is he on Oregon’s payroll? If Willie Lyles collected $25,000 off my son he needs to be held accountable. The NCAA must find out for me. I don’t know how to digest someone cashing in on my son.”

New information made available today on ChuckOliver.net from a source who used to be a business associate of Lyles suggests Lyles has a habit of preying on athletes with single  mothers, like Seastrunk.

Ingram Smith, author of the ChuckOliver.net story, makes an interesting point about the origin of the story. Last night the story broke on Yahoo! Sports, ESPN and Sports Illustrated, leaving Smith to wonder if the same source didn’t tip off all three media outlets.

Smith has sources who tell him that the University of Texas has been growing suspicious of Lyles for awhile. Says Smith, “Inside the Longhorn’s program there is tremendous suspicion regarding Lyles’ influence on some of the state’s top talent and how many of the state’s best players that were associated with Lyles, like Seastrunk, are leaving the state at an historically high rate and under fishy circumstances.”

There seems to be a growing number of instances where schools are rumored to be “tattling” on other schools. Remember that both Mississippi State and University of Florida were rumored to have pointed the finger at Cam Newton initially. Instead of being like a fraternity who protects its members at all costs, it appears college football is splintering as schools battle for top recruits and championships. Given the number of coaches and assistants who move around each and every year, taking with them inside knowledge of their former programs, look for this phenomenon to continue to grow.

This article offers the personal observations of Kristi Dosh, and does not represent the views of her law firm or its clients.  Any information contained herein does not constitute legal advice. Consult your own attorney for legal advice on these matters.