UO President Michael Schill is the one person who can make it happen

That’s the closing line from LCB Prof. Dennis Howard’s Op-Ed on Duck Athletics and UO, in the RG on Sunday and online here. The RG comments are pretty interesting as well. Prof. Howard and I had a panel discussion on athletic funding at the Eugene City Club in June, there’s more on that here.

I don’t agree with all of this Op-Ed. In particular there are many more hidden subsidies, and I think efforts to use Duck football to market UO academic’s side will probably be expensive and embarrassing failures. But the conclusion sure resonates:

… We can also do a better job of using athletics as an asset in our academic fundraising efforts. The Duck Athletic Fund must be fully integrated into the UO’s academic capital campaign.

Ohio State University provides an excellent model. There, athletic and academic fundraising personnel are rewarded for working together. Attractive athletic assets such as preferred seating for football and basketball are used to reward donors who give to academics as well as to athletics.

Athletics is the UO’s gateway to giving. Historically, 70 percent of those who give more than a $1,000 a year to the academic programs first gave to athletics. Importantly, a significant number of these donors eventually commit a sizeable share of their giving to academics.

Recently this trend has declined. To harness the power of our academic and athletic programs the UO needs a unified fundraising model in which athletic and academic fundraising units work collaboratively on behalf of the entire institution.

UO President Michael Schill is the one person who can make it happen.

UO could save $3M a year by shutting down basketball, mothballing Knight Arena

7/11/2015 update: Matt Prehm has an interview with Duck spokesperson Craig Pintens on basketball tickets, here:

The Ducks averaged just 6,209 fans per home game during the 2014-15 season, ranking seventh in the Pac-12. It was the lowest figure since 1992 when an average of 5,819 fans attended games at McArthur Court.

… The Athletic Department operates on zero funding from the University of Oregon [Yeah, sure it does], and so every penny can sometimes count. That’s why when Oregon decided to slash prices across the board – a 34-percent slash on average – was such a difficult decision.

The Athletic Department is reporting a near 90-percent season ticket renewal rate from last season, and while that’s well above the 80-percent renewal norm for the basketball team, it’s still a huge financial hit with the slashed prices.

… With a better marketing plan of the program, ticket costs slashed, and a better non-conference schedule Oregon is seeing early returns pay off.

No, actually this isn’t paying off. I’m no economist, but if you cut prices 34% and sales only increase by 10 points on a base of 80 – lets call that 13% – total revenue will drop. As it did. And as explained below the basketball program is now losing millions – even if you ignore the sunk costs of the $13.5M Knight Arena bond payments.

And it seems that they are prepared to lose more millions to avoid the embarrassment of having the country’s most expensive college arena sit half empty. Meanwhile, the millions in hidden subsidies from the academic continue – including the $450K we pay athletics each year for the Knight Arena land.

Meanwhile Coach Altman has also succeeded in driving away the UO student fans:

… Based on numbers given to me by [Duck PR flack Craig Pintens], the average student attendance for this season was 989 per game. Last season, they were 1,539. In 2012, it was 1,541. In 2011, it was 1,574.

5/15/2015:  UO could save $3M a year by shutting down basketball, mothballing Knight Arena

Continue reading

Former Provost John Moseley agrees with Harbaugh on athletics funding

7/1/2015: In the RG Letters, here

UO athletics should share its bounty

I don’t often agree with Bill Harbaugh, but I must admit he and Dennis Howard made a very good point in their June 26 talk to the City Club of Eugene. The University of Oregon Department of Athletics should be contributing more directly to the UO general fund for academic support.

When I was UO provost and senior vice president (1994-2006), I reached an agreement in 2000 with then-Athletic Director Bill Moos that athletics would not be subsidized from the general fund and would become fully self-supporting.

Before that, the general fund subsidized athletics to the tune of more than $1 million per year.

I assume that agreement is still being followed. If it is, the UO program is one of the few among public universities that’s self-supporting, a laudable situation. Since then, UO athletics has flourished and is now in a position to give back to the university that gave it life and has supported it through many lean years, from the 1960s through the 1990s.

I believe the suggestion that 10 percent of the Athletic Department budget be returned to the general fund is reasonable, and certainly affordable for athletics. That shouldn’t be construed as a “gift” to the UO. All athletic facilities stand on land owned by the university. (Matt Knight Arena was paid for at least in part with Athletic Department funds and is technically owned by the university.)

A 10 percent fee for the use of the land, and the UO name, seems eminently reasonable to me.

JOHN MOSELEY

Moseley was Provost when the 2004 Task Force agreement was signed. As he notes, it called for an end to subsidies. From what I can tell those subsidies did end under Moseley’s tenure as provost. But millions more crept back on the books under provosts Linda Brady and Jim Bean, and Scott Coltrane did nothing to deal with them as Provost, or as Interim President.

6/26/2015: Can we make big-time Duck sports work for UO?

Diane Dietz has the story on the Eugene City Club’s Friday talk with myself and LCB professor emeritus Dennis Howard, in the RG here. Please consider posting comments there. Some ideas that came out of the panel:

… Put the fund-raising personnel the athletics department employs and those the university employs under the same managers, Howard said. Collaborate instead of compete for contributions, he said. Do joint pitches for athletic and academic gifts. “We could do it so much better,” Howard said.

Harbaugh agreed, saying, “It would be really good if we were all in this together and the athletic department was trying to help the rest of the university.”

Harbaugh suggested the university take charge of the athletic department budget centrally, with university financial officers doling out the annual budget and the university absorbing any excess — as is done now for other UO departments.

Or, go a different direction, and cut the Athletic Department loose, encourage it to raise as much as it can and take 10 percent of revenues to pay for academic scholarships.

If scholarships were tied to wins in that way, UO professors would get their pom-poms out, he said.

Thanks to the City Club and organizers Karen Wyatt and Marty Wilde for hosting this discussion. We had a good turnout and what I thought was an interesting discussion and questions. Audio should be posted on KLCC in a day or two here. From the Eugene City Club website:

The Future of Collegiate Athletics at the U of O
Downtown Athletic Club, 3rd Floor Ballroom

… Many in the community say that the fondness for Ducks teams and other world class sporting events contributes to a sense of community pride and brings people together in a unique and spirited way. Others express concerns about the exploitation of student athletes say that the resources expended on athletics come at the expense of academics and other community resources.

Considered an international authority on sports finance, Howard was head of the Marketing Department for the UO Lundquist College of Business before becoming its Dean. He has held various positions at the UO for more than 25 years, with one five-year break to head the graduate program in sport management at Ohio State University. His PhD is from Oregon State University.

Harbaugh has a Phd in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He’s been an economics professor at UO since 1995, and has edited the UO Matters blog since 2009. His research on the neural foundations of charitable giving has been published in Science, and featured in the New York Times. He has been on UO’s Intercollegiate Athletics Committee since 2011, and this June 3rd he was elected as the UO Senate VP and President-Elect on a platform that included a call for a new UO Task Force to fix the broken relationship between Duck athletics and UO’s academic side.

City Club members will engage the speakers in a Q&A session after the presentations.

Continue reading

Civic Stadium’s replacement, PK Park, will divert money from UO academics until 2021

Today’s devastating Civic Stadium fire prompted me to look at the agreements between UO Foundation CEO Paul Weinhold, UO Presidents Frohnmayer and Lariviere, and Duck Athletic Directors Bellotti and Mullens for the UO Foundation guaranteed loans that financed PK Park, which became the Eugene Emerald’s replacement field.

One interesting clause shows that UO is using general unrestricted gifts to the UO Foundation – i.e. gift money that could be used for academic purposes – to subsidize the Duck Athletic Fund. Furthermore, the agreement specifies that UO’s academic side can’t reduce those athletic subsidies until the PK Park balloon loan is repaid, in 2021.

The full MOUs – which UO kept secret until I made a public records petition to the Oregon DOJ – are here:

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Read more about Sambla

I’ve made a public records request for the accounting records:

Date: June 29, 2015 at 11:19:25 PM PDT
To: Lisa Thornton <pubrec@uoregon.edu>
Cc: Eric Roedl <roedl@uoregon.edu>

Dear Ms Thornton –

This is a public records request for BANNER accounting statements showing how much in UO Foundation general unrestricted gift funds and gifts designated to general operations (as distinct from Duck Athletic Fund or other contributions specifically earmarked by the donors for athletic purposes) have been allocated to the UO Athletic Department, for each of the fiscal years from 2008 to 2015.

I attach a copy of the PK Park loan MOU’s for 2009 and 2011, which note the existence of these allocations.

I’m ccing Duck AAD Eric Roedl, as he should be able to easily produce these records.

Perverse financial incentives add $20K to Duck AD Rob Mullens’s $700K pay

Rob Moseley has the news here:

By Rob Moseley
Editor, GoDucks.com

A strong spring fueled by NCAA championships in men’s and women’s track & field propelled the Oregon athletic department to a school-record 13th-place finish in the 2014-15 Division I Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings, as announced Thursday.

The Directors’ Cup uses a points system and accounts for 10 men’s and 10 women’s sports from each school to calculate an annual ranking of the nation’s most successful athletic departments. Despite fielding just 18 NCAA programs, Oregon totaled 933.5 points to finish in the top 15 for the third year in a row, and the fourth time ever.

The Ducks remain the only program ever to finish in the top 15 with 18 or fewer NCAA-sponsored sports. Stanford, UCLA and USC took the top three spots in this year’s ranking and Cal was 12th, giving the Pac-12 five of the top 13 spots.

“The culture of excellence we’ve worked to foster with our staff, student-athletes and supporters is unique, and provides an incredible competitive advantage,” UO athletic director Rob Mullens said. “We’re competing in the toughest conference in the country and enjoying unprecedented success.”

And that success means money. While all of these sports, except football, lose money, that doesn’t mean Rob Mullens will. In Feb 2015 the UO Board of Trustees (minutes here) gave Mullens a $250K raise, to $700K, plus a generous package of performance incentives, including renewing this:

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The full contract is here. This clause gives Mullens every incentive to increase the number of UO sports teams, and increase the amount of money that each spends on coaches, recruiting, travel, etc. If ticket sales and TV revenue isn’t enough, he can try paying for it by raising the amount athletics charges UO’s student government for “free” tickets.

Many of the UO Trustees are business people who serve on corporate boards. Why didn’t they do what a corporate board would do, and write Mullens a contract that included incentives for reducing the financial subsidies that the Duck athletic department gets from UO? Or even give him an incentive to actually helping out the academic side, by cutting costs so and saving some money for, say, merit scholarships for Oregon undergrads?

I don’t know.

Fracture on UO campus hurts all over

Oregonian sports columnist John Canzano has the story here:

Oregon will tell you that it regularly conducts its own education and training sessions for athletes. One of them, it was recently revealed, included a presentation to Ducks football players by an athletic department staffer on how Russian prostitutes working for motorcycle gangs might target them.

So that scenario is covered. Now, maybe let’s get real. Maybe bring a local woman who was assaulted 16 years ago in front of the college football players and lets get busy changing attitudes and putting a real face on horrible crime.

Canzano covers it all. The explosion in the Duck budget, and the irritation of the state legislature. Gottfredson’s attempt to replace the Senate IAC with a more complacent PAGIA, chaired by advertising professor Kim Sheehan. The IAC bringing survivor Brenda Tracy to campus (video here) and none of the athletic department employees coming to hear her. Coltrane paying PR flack Anna Richter-Taylor $299K to “hold his hand” about PR disaster he inherited from Gottfredson and Geller, and the countersuit against Jane Doe. And more. Read it all.

And watch the Brenda Tracy video. She is the survivor of a sexual assault by two Oregon State football players and two others, 16 years ago. She went public after newspapers broke the story of the alleged UO basketball player gang rape of Jane Doe. John Canzano published Ms Tracy’s horrible and courageous story in the Oregonian, here, Kurt Krueger, the chair of the UO Senate’s Intercollegiate Athletics Committee, invited her to speak at UO. Here is her story, which must be heard:

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Contrast it with Duck basketball coach Dana Altman’s evasive news conference from last year, here:

Journalism students expose athletics subsidies for investigative reporting class

The UO administration and foundation do a much better job of hiding their jock subsidies than UC does. The story in the Cincinatti CityBeat is here:

Robin Hood in Reverse

How universities force working-class students to pay thousands of dollars in hidden fees to athletic departments awash in red ink:

This story was written and reported by an investigative reporting class at the University of Cincinnati. Reporting by Morgan Batanian, Katie Coburn, Fernanda Crescente, Taylor Jackson, Tyler Kuhnash and Camri Nelson. Research contributed by Taylor Hayden, Talis Linauts, Kayleigh Murch, Matt Nichols, Malia Pitts and Lauren Smith.

Kevin Leugers pays the University of Cincinnati to provide him with a quality education.

The second-year student majoring in marketing and philosophy had no idea officials had quietly funneled tens of millions of dollars from students to the athletic department in recent years to cover the difference between revenue and expenses.

“It seems to be a corruption of education, in all honesty,” says Leugers, a University Honors Program student and Kolodzik Business Scholar. “Athletics is being given priority over education, over the professors, over the students. I just think that’s wrong.”

… [Board of Trustees Chair Thomas Hum] says sports are “a good investment for the university as a whole” and that the board decided every dollar given to the athletic department was money well spent.

“There has been a decision that whatever that investment number is that it is a positive investment for the university,” he says. “I don’t view it as a concern.”

The investment certainly brought a high return in 2014 to some UC coaches, particularly compared to the university’s 334 student-athletes. The university provided the students with $5.99 million in scholarship aid, less than 11 percent of the $55.4 million in athletic expenditures, according to UC’s NCAA report.

That same year, UC paid a dozen coaches on the football and men’s basketball teams more than $10.5 million, 19 percent of total spending. At the top was Tommy Tuberville, UC’s head football coach, who received $3.8 million.

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Tough financial situation means cuts to Athletic Department

At the University of Wisconsin, that is. From Chancellor Rebecca Blank, the economist who beat out Michael Schill for the UW job – in a public search:

As mentioned, we are directing our schools, colleges and units, including our Athletic Department, to make greater financial contributions back to our central campus. The tuition increases I mentioned earlier will allow us to support the freeze on in-state student tuition and maintain the quality of our programs. We will continue to pursue ways to operate even more efficiently.

While our true uncommitted reserves equal only $54 million today, we are in the process of estimating our fund balance as we close this fiscal year. We intend to delay some number of projects and utilize a portion of those fund balances to help bridge the gap with the expected budget shortfall.

Here at UO Interim President Coltrane has told the UO Senate to stop talking about athletic finances, or else he’s going to do his best to stack the Senate with more complacent faculty and staff:

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As UO students and Senate put pressure on bloated Duck budget, coaches finally start raising money for academic scholarships

The Senate legislation is for ~$3M recurring. The coach’s charitable drive is for $500K, one-time.

A cynic might think this announcement is a reaction to the UO Senate’s recent legislation to require the Ducks to make payments from their bloated budget to support the academic side, or to the Change.org petition by UO students, protesting AAD Eric Roedl’s cuts to student ticket allotments. Helfrich just got a $17.5M raise, and is pledging $250K of that to the scholarship drive:

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A modest proposal to raise $7.5M for faculty pay and hiring by small athletic cuts

The Athletics Department is expecting $98,350,368 in total revenue this year, mostly for football and a little from basketball. The money is then distributed among the many money losing sports, shown in red in the table below, so as to make sure there is no surplus for the academic side. (These data are from the athletic department at http://www.goducks.com/fls/500/pages/athlfin/FY15Budget.pdf)

Notre Dame’s athletic program is slightly larger than UO’s and it give an estimated $12M to $20M back to academics. What would it take to do something similar at UO? The secret is to keep football profitable, make sure mens and women’s basketball doesn’t lose any more than they already do. and don’t touch track and field for historic reasons.

Give these constraints, we could either drop a few money losing other sports, or cut back on their expenses. Cutting expenses seems simple. As you can see a modest 30% cut in costs for the money losing sports (leaving M&W basketball as well as football and track untouched).would generate $7.5M in recurring money for the academic side. I assume that the expense cuts would also cut revenue.

This would take these 10 small athletics programs back roughly to where they were in 2005, and generate $7.5M for UO academics.

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University Panel recommends dropping 8 sports

11/15/2011: From the Washington Post. The president of the University of Maryland established the panel to take control of the athletic department’s budget. The problems at UO seem similar: massive overspending on salaries, chronic deficit, depletion of the reserve funds. Dropping Duck sports – baseball is the obvious candidate – would be very unpopular with UO Athletic Department Director Rob Mullens. His pay is tied to UO’s performance in the “Director’s Cup“, a bogus competition set up by the NCAA to encourage colleges to field lots of teams. Next time we hire an ADD, we need to make sure we write a contract tied to balancing the AD budget!

Harbaugh, Kent, Oriard and Wright: Are big-time college sports worth it?

Video now up: Of course they are – but for whom?

I made a pitch for the 3% tax, and talked a little bit about things like FHS 199. It was a good discussion, with some very interesting questions from the Portland City Club members:

I’ll be on a panel at the Portland City Club tomorrow, discussing this with Jordan Kent and Michael Oriard, moderated by Ryan White. Hank Stern of GoLocalPDX has a post up:

And give City Club credit for what promises to be an intriguing panel of former Ducks football and basketball player Jordan Kent, now an analyst at Comcast Sportsnet NW; University of Oregon economics professor Bill Harbaugh of the watchdog UO Matters blog; and retired Oregon State University professor of American literature and culture Michael Oriard, who played football at Notre Dame and in the NFL for the Kansas City Chiefs.

RegisterGuard on UO Senate efforts to get Duck money for academics:

“Give it to the students: If UO has athletic surplus, approve a fee rebate”

3/12/2015, in the RG, here:

The financial divergence between the University of Ore­gon’s athletic department and the rest of the institution is galling to those on the wrong side of the gap, leading to demands that the sports enterprise share its wealth. The latest demand comes in the form of a vote by the University Senate in favor of diverting 3 percent of the athletic budget, or about $3 million a year, to academic programs. But if there’s extra money piling up in the athletic department’s till, students should be first in line to get it. …

3/7/2015 update: UO Senate legislation requires Ducks pay $500K to academics next year

3/6/2015: The students have already voted to freeze the amount they give the athletic department for tickets. Now the entire UO Senate has voted to require that athletic department start paying a dividend to the academic side.

Diane Dietz has the report in the RG. Read it all, here:

The University Senate — amid the three-day Board of Trustees meeting — voted unanimously to require the university to eventually collect 3 percent of the athletic department’s roughly $100 million annual budget, or roughly $3 million, for general education purposes. The education tax would be phased in ­gradually over five years.

… But the athletic department’s budget is an ongoing tender spot for many faculty members, who see their programs as suffering by comparison. One example they point to is the Jaqua Center.

The university spends $4,000 per student-athlete for tutoring services there, according to economics professor Bill Harbaugh, who sponsored the University Senate legislation. But the university has only $225 per student to spend for tutoring services for the general run of students.

… Susan Lesyk, director of the Teaching and Learning Center, which provides tutoring services for regular students in the basement of an old brick building across campus, said at first she was glad when the Jaqua Center went up in 2010. “I don’t resent what they have. Every student should have that,” she told the trustees.

She said she was sure it meant improvement was coming for her tutoring services. She showed trustees how the services significantly upped graduation rates for disadvantaged students.

“We need a Jaqua Center for all of us,” Lisa Freinkel, vice provost for undergraduate studies, told the trustees.

Mullens said he had no idea about the cost differential between the athlete and nonathlete tutoring services. “I can’t speak to those figures. I only live in the athletics figures,” he said.

Senate Motion:

Payments by Athletic Department for General Academic Purposes

Legislation, Resolution, or Policy Adoption: Legislation

Current Status: Approved on 03/04/15

Motion:

Section I

1.1 WHEREAS in 2004, the UO Athletics Task Force, which included President Dave Frohnmayer, Athletic Director Bill Moos, NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Jim O’Fallon, the Senate President, and many Senate and faculty representatives, concluded a three-year study of UO athletics with a report that stated as recommendation #1,

“The Task Force and the Athletic Department recommend a voluntary financial contribution by
athletics to the Presidential Scholarship fund.”[1]; and

1.2 WHEREAS in 2008 the Senate passed a resolution reiterating this recommendation[2]; and

1.3 WHEREAS in May 2012 the UO Senate passed another resolution (endorsed by four former Senate Presidents in its stronger form as legislation) requesting that the President direct the Athletic Department to end subsidies for athletics starting on 7/1/2013 and start making payments for academic purposes starting in 7/1/2014[3] [4]; and

1.4 WHEREAS two months after the 2012 resolution President Gottfredson wrote to Senate President Margie Paris that

“One intent of the resolution is to ensure that athletics is paying an appropriate share of the costs associated with tutoring and advising of student athletes and for the arena. This is clearly an appropriate aim and one with which I am fully supportive. More analysis needs to be undertaken to ascertain the nature of these obligations while preserving legitimate expectations derived from the existing agreements. We will expeditiously work to resolve these issues in collaboration with athletics.”[5]; and

1.5 WHEREAS the subsidies have not been ended, and to the contrary the payments from the Provost’s budget to support tutoring and advising at the Jaqua Center for Student-Athletes, services that are available only to student-athletes, have increased from $600K in 2008 to $1.8M for FY 2011-12 and now to $2.2M for the 2014-15 FY, after passage of the 2012 resolution. These services cost about $4,000 per student-athlete, while UO’s spending on similar services for non-athlete students averages only about $225[6]; and

1.6 WHEREAS the Athletic Department solicits donations and ticket surcharges for the Duck Athletic Fund, totaling $28M for 2014-15[7], with the statement that,

“The mission of the Duck Athletic Fund is to raise funds to offset the expenses of student-athletic scholarships and related athletic department support at the University of Oregon.”[8];
and

1.7 WHEREAS in the most recently available data, for 2013-14, the Athletic Department paid only $10 million from these DAF funds to the academic side for tuition, and did not pay any of the cost of student-athlete services other than a portion of the maintenance costs of the Jaqua building[9]; and

1.8 WHEREAS UO’s academic budget has been paying $467,538 a year since 2009 to repay the portion of bonds used to purchase the Knight Arena land representing the area of the Mac Court land[10]; and

1.9 WHEREAS eleven years have now passed since the 2004 Task Force report calling for voluntary contributions from athletics toward academic scholarships, during which annual operating expenditures by the Athletic Department have increased from less than $40 million to more than $98 million[11]; and

1.10 WHEREAS during that time the athletic department has not made any such contributions and in fact has received increasing subsidies from the academic budget; and

1.11 WHEREAS the University Senate voted on February 12, 2014 that the motions on ending subsidies to the Athletic Department and payments by the Athletic Department for general academic purposes should be put forth as two separate motions;

Section II

2.1 BE IT HEREBY MOVED that the President shall provide the Senate with a budget and a schedule for implementation for payments from the Athletic Department budget for the support of general academic purposes no later than the first Senate meeting of May 2015, and that this schedule shall include a payment of no less than 0.5% of total Athletic Department revenue for the 2015-16 FY, and increasing to no less than 1% for the 2016-17 FY, and increasing in subsequent years by no less than 0.5 percentage points, until it reaches 3%.

Financial Impact:

Cost neutral

Sponsor:

William Harbaugh (Economics), Senator

[1] UO Task Force Report at http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/~uosenate/dirsen034/finalreportATF04.pdf

[2] 2008 motion at http://pages.uoregon.edu/uosenate/dirsen078/US078-15.html

[3] 2012 motion at http://senate.uoregon.edu/content/payments-athletics-department-academic-purposes

[4] Endorsements of former Senate Presidents at http://www.uomatters.com/2013/05/senate-pases-motion-to-make-athletic.html

[5] Letter from President Gottfredson to President Paris at http://senate.uoregon.edu/files/President%27s Response to US2012-13_20.pdf

[6] UO Financial Transparency Report at https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/971644/uomatters/IAC/Provost payments to Jaqua Center 2012 to 2014.pdf and Register Guard story referenced athttp://www.oregonlive.com/news/oregonian/steve_duin/index.ssf/2011/05/post_7.html

[7] Report at http://www.goducks.com/fls/500/pages/athlfin/FY15Budget.pdf

[8] Report at http://goducks.com/fls/500/pages/daf/DAF_Brochure.pdf?hq_e=el&hq_m=402524&hq_l=10&hq_v=c904dd1d98

[9] UO Foundation report at http://www.goducks.com/fls/500/pages/athlfin/FY14ExpensesByType.pdf

[10] Frohnmayer/Kilkenny MOU at http://www.goducks.com/fls/500/pages/athlfin/MOU-Debt-Service-of-Purchase-of-Land-for-New-Arena.pdf?DB_OEM_ID=500

[11] AD budget at http://www.goducks.com/fls/500/pages/athlfin/FY15Budget.pdf

Ducks must bribe UO students to watch Dana Altman coach at Matt Court

But it’s not working, attendance is now below 1,000. Hayden Kim has the story in the Daily Emerald. Here are a few selective and shamelessly rearranged quotes:

… Based on numbers given to me by [Duck PR flack Craig Pintens], the average student attendance for this season was 989 per game. Last season, they were 1,539. In 2012, it was 1,541. In 2011, it was 1,574.

[Why?]

… Third, is the fans’ attachment to promotions and product giveaways – specifically the occasional Nike customized shoes that are given away at home games through a raffle. Of course the Pit Crew is going to take advantage of their unique relationship with Phil Knight and Nike, but to say that their reliance on attracting students to games for free products is sustainable for long-term success, would be a lie.

“We need to be able to create long-term fans and you do that by having a great experience,”Senior Associate Athletic Director Craig Pintens said. “You can’t do a t-shirt every game or free food every game because then it’s not special and it loses that appeal. We need to examine everything and do a better job.”

[Fire your sleazy coach, for starters.]

When I was covering the final Civil War of the year at Gill Coliseum, I couldn’t hear myself think. The Oregon State crowd was electric and the fans were constantly on their feet. The energy was contagious. The place felt like a sauna. This is how a college arena should look and feel. Gill Coliseum holds 9,604 and there were 9,339 at this game.

I don’t know about you, but when Oregon State students pack their smaller 66-year-old gym and make it rock louder than Oregon’s state-of-the-art venue, there’s a problem.

In short, UO should have just said no to Phil Knight and Matt Court. Mac Court was a lot more fun. This is great reporting, Mr. Kim. Here’s hoping you will also turn your attention to:

1) Duck AAD Eric Roedl’s efforts to increase the mandatory ifee for “free” tickets. So far Roedl has been beaten back by UO student Andrew Lubash.

2) The most obvious reason UO students avoid Matt Court and Dana Altman – they’re afraid Altman might sue them too.

“Not in Our Name”: UO Senate rejects UO admin’s rape lawsuit response. Will require payments from athletics for academic purposes. Senate will elect NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative. All unanimous.

Good turnout, good decisions. Now we just have to get President Coltrane to implement them.

Senate Meeting Agenda – March 4, 2015 – Watch Live2014-2015Agendas

3:00 pm    1.   Call to Order

3:00 pm    2.   Approval of Minutes  January 21, 2015

3:05 pm    3.   State of the University

3.1       Remarks by Interim President Coltrane (delivered by Robert Kyr, Senate President). Coltrane’s remarks focus on what a good job his administration is doing dealing with the sexual assault prevention problems. This link seems to give this basis for this claim, which is not shared by many people outside his Executive Leadership Team.

3:15 pm    4.   New Business

Jennifer Freyd moves to suspend the rules to consider a resolution rejecting the UO administration’s response to the basketball rape allegations:

Sponsors: Freyd, Stabile, Gassamma, Psaki.

“Not in Our Name: The UO Senate rejects UO’s response to the lawsuit from the student survivor of alleged rape”

Number:
Legislation, Resolution, or Policy Adoption: Resolution
Current Status:
Motion:

Section I

1.1  WHEREAS on January 8th 2015 the University of Oregon student survivor of an alleged March 8th-9th 2014 gang rape by three UO basketball players sued the University and Basketball Coach Dana Altman;1

1.2  AND WHEREAS on February 9th the University filed a counterclaim against the student, asking the court to order her to pay the fees for the University’s own outside lawyers;2

1.3  AND WHEREAS the University’s counterclaim outraged many in the university community and the public;

1.4  AND WHEREAS, despite withdrawing the counterclaim on February 26th, the University retained language from the counterclaim saying that some of the lawsuit’s allegations (a) amount to “unclean hands,” (b) “threaten to harm … all sexual assault survivors in Oregon’s campus community“ and (c) create a “risk that other survivors will wrongly be discouraged from reporting sexual assaults and sexual harassment”;3

1.5  AND WHEREAS the University’s efforts to defend itself in this and similar cases should be limited to disputing facts, instead of using its legal documents to make sweeping, polemical policy statements that themselves can cause harm to survivors;

Section II

2.1  BE IT THEREFORE MOVED that the University of Oregon Senate appreciates Interim President Coltrane’s decision to drop the University’s counterclaim against the student survivor, for UO’s legal fees;

2.2  AND BE IT FURTHERMORE MOVED that the Senate fears that the victim-blaming language that is still in the revised response listed under “unclean hands” will harm victims of sexual assault at the University of Oregon, discourage them from reporting rapes, and have a chilling effect on them defending their civil rights in court;

2.3  AND BE IT MOVED that the Senate requests that the University report to the Senate on how the University originally decided to file this counterclaim and how it later decided to continue the assertions that parts of the alleged victim’s lawsuit are to be blamed for discouraging rape reports;

2.4  AND BE IT FURTHERMORE MOVED that the University of Oregon Senate asks the University President to withdraw the remaining counterclaim language that has been retained as a charge of “unclean hands”;

2.5  AND BE IT FINALLY MOVED that the University of Oregon Senate wants all to know that the University of Oregon administration and Basketball Coach Dana Altman are not acting or speaking in our name.

Financial Impact:

Cost neutral.

1 Jane Doe claim:

http://ia802700.us.archive.org/29/items/gov.uscourts.ord.120035/gov.uscourts.or d.120035.1.0.pdf
2 UO and Dana Altman response and counterclaim against Jane Doe, pages 24-27, http://ia902700.us.archive.org/29/items/gov.uscourts.ord.120035/gov.uscourts.or d.120035.7.0.pdf

3 UO revised response

http://ia802700.us.archive.org/29/items/gov.uscourts.ord.120035/gov.uscourts.or d.120035.14.0.pdf

Background:
From UO’s revised response:

NINETEENTH DEFENSE (Unclean Hands/Estoppel)

101. Plaintiff’s attorney represented plaintiff throughout Oregon’s investigation of her allegations and conduct proceeding, and consented to the process about which he now complains. Plaintiff is therefore estopped or barred under the doctrine of unclean hands from complaining about the process.

102. Plaintiff’s attorneys filed a lawsuit with unfounded allegations that damage a good man’s reputation7 in an attempt to curry favor and gain traction in the media and create pressure for a public university to pay a hefty sum to plaintiff even though it has done nothing wrong. In this case plaintiff’s counsel’s false allegations threaten to harm not only Oregon and Altman, but all sexual assault survivors in Oregon’s campus community. The publication of false allegations about Oregon’s handling of a report of an alleged sexual assault creates a very real risk that other

survivors will wrongly be discouraged from reporting sexual assaults and sexual harassment to Oregon, in direct contravention of the goals of both Title IX and the University of Oregon. Conveying the facts about how Oregon properly handled plaintiff’s case is necessary to demonstrate the high priority Oregon gives to honoring the rights guaranteed by Title IX.

7 See, e.g., John Canzano, Every Day Oregon Stands With Dana Altman Is Another Step Into the Muck, Oregonian, Jan. 8, 2014 (accepting as true the false allegations in the complaint that Altman knew about prior allegations of rape against Austin and calling for his termination).

Debate on the pros and cons, then the Senate passes this unanimously.

4.1       Motion (Legislation): Repeal of Original University “Policy on Policies”; Senate Executive Committee

Passes unanimously.

4.2       Motion (Legislation): Minor Revision to Section 5.3 of the New University “Policy on Policies”; Senate Executive Committee

Passes unanimously.

4.3       Motion (Legislation): Ad hoc Committee to Investigate the Role and Function of the Faculty Advisory Council (FAC); Senate Committee on Committees

Randy Sullivan puts this forward. Asks for more time to figure out what to do about the FAC. Passes unanimously after amendment to extend deadline to give new UO President time to weigh in.

4.4       Motion (Legislation): Temporary Exemption of the Faculty Advisory Committee from the Provisions of US13/14-19, “Open Committee Meetings“; Senate Committee on Committees

Passes unanimously.

4.5       Motion (Resolution): ASUO-Athletics Ticket Agreement; Andrew Lubash, University Senator and Student Senator

Not yet ready.

4.6       Motion (Legislation): Payments by Athletics Department for General Academic Purposes; William Harbaugh (Economics), Senator

Passes unanimously.

4.7       Motion (Legislation): Selection of the UO Faculty Athletics Representative; Pedro Garcia-Caro (Romance Languages), William Harbaugh (Economics), Senator

Passes unanimously.

4.8       Motion (Legislation): To Promote Representative Attendance at Senate Meetings; Senate Executive Committee

Good discussion, delayed til the second meeting in April to think it over. We also learned what AVP for Collaboration Charles Triplett does to earn that $130K: he’s keeping a list of who’s been naughty and nice in the Senate:

Come on Chuck, this is pathetic. You need a computer? Dave Hubin has been doing this in his head for years.

4:55 pm    5.   Open Discussion

4:55 pm    6.   Reports

4:55 pm    7.   Notice(s) of Motion

4:55 pm    8.   Other Business

5:00 pm    9.   Adjournment