It’s time for UO to drop baseball

8/21/2012: Pat Kilkenny paid for the park with a secret balloon loan from the UO Foundation that UO wouldn’t explain unless I paid the public records office $484.42:

UO students had to pay $1.54 million in subsidies for baseball last year, and even Bob Berdahl thought that coach George Horton scheduled too many away games during classes.

And now Horton is asking Mullens and UO President Mike Gottfredson for a 33% raise, to $600,000 a year. Adam Jude story in the Oregonian. Best suggestion from their comments? Pay Horton 10% of the profits. Net profits, that is.

Duck baseball coach George Horton’s porkalicious contract expires in June

Duck AD Rob Mullens has shown quite the talent for signing expensive long term contracts just before Duck coaches start to lose. But Horton peaked years ago. His players won some sort of NCAA championship in 2012, so Mullens gave him the sweetheart contract below. All downhill since. This year the Ducks aren’t even ranked in the pre-season top 40, while OSU is #5.

So it will be interesting to see how much Mullens will spend to save Pat Kilkenny’s baseball program, which is losing millions for UO. Horton’s 2012-17 contract expires in June. More on the secret deal that built Kilkenny’s PK Park here.

etc. Contract here.

 

UO dumps more money on baseball

6/3/2013; Word down at UO’s heavily mortgaged PK Park is that they can barely sell half the seats for an NCAA final 8 match. Total ticket revenue this year is about $385K, operating costs are $5.8M plus the coaches salaries. Rob Mullens can’t meet his promises to the academic side, but he gave Coach Horton $450,000 plus these rather easy bonuses:

And the balloon loan former UO Foundation trustee Pat Kilkenny got from from the UO Foundation to pay for construction of the park he named after himself is due in a few years. Want more info? Pay UO $484.42 to see the public records.


1/15/2012: Has Pat Kilkenny paid off his previous pledges, or is the UO Foundation still on the hook for the $10 million PK Park costs?

(Amounts in $ thousands). The Ducks have to pay the Foundation 6.25% to borrow money for baseball? Weird. You’d think a solid pledge would be good enough colateral to get a substantially better rate. But UO won’t explain what’s going on, unless we pay them $484.42:

Now former athletics finance director and new UO CFO Jamie Moffitt is letting out a bid for still more work on PK Park. While Rob Mullens argues that the athletic department does not have any money to contribute towards student scholarships. PK Park – another athletic department gift that keeps on taking from the academic side.

Drop baseball, give the faculty 4% merit raises

3/25/2013: Let’s help UO’s VPFA (and former athletic department chief financial officer) Jamie Moffitt find the money to pay for the faculty raises in the Lariviere plan. Every 1% raise for the faculty (TTF and NTTF) costs UO about $910K. Add in the variable benefit costs and it’s about $1.15M.

Sharon Rudnick has asked the faculty for suggestions on where to find the money. Here’s one. Pat Kilkenny’s baseball program cost UO millions in fixed costs – we still owe about $5 million on a balloon loan for his PK Park. We’re stuck with that “gift”. But, according to the official AD data posted at GoDucks.com, this year’s variable costs for baseball will be almost $2.2 million:

while revenue is only projected at $385K:
So drop baseball and we’d certainly save $1.8 million next year, enough for a 1.6% raise for the faculty. But that’s ignoring their share of the $52M in athletics department “administrative expenses”. Prorate that on the basis of baseball’s share of variable costs, $2.1M/$30M=7%, and get another $3.5M. Let’s be real conservative and call it $4.6 million in savings total. That’s enough to pay for the 4% merit pool the union is calling for in 2014-15. 
Thinking about Title 9 compliance? Drop baseball and we could drop Kilkenny’s competitive cheerleading program too. That would save another $800K plus admin expenses – enough to cut tuition by about $100 for every in-state student.

Mullens gives more cash to money-losing baseball coach

11/16/2012: Adam Jude has the story in the Oregonian. Horton’s program loses a cool $1.5 million a year, not to mention the upcoming $5 million balloon payment the athletic department owes on the loan Kilkenny used to build the ball park he named after himself. But Rob Mullens pays Horton $500,000 plus a cut of the gate. He’s losing money, so Mullens will pay him based on the gross! These guys are always so generous when they spend our money on themselves. A reader points me to this Mark Johnson story in the RG.

Gottfredson approved this raise for a coach, but not the 3.5% raise for faculty that the union has proposed.

Horton’s PERS costs to approach Bellotti’s?

Bellotti was able to take advantage of a variety of loopholes – including a well timed divorce and remarriage, plus payments based on Nike earnings for which no contributions were made – to get a budget busting $500,000 a year PERS payoff. Ted Sickinger of the Oregonian did an amazing investigative story on that last year, after the Oregonian sued PERS for the data. The always well informed Hannah Hoffman explains that b-baller coach George Horton won’t get the same special benefits, due to recent federal reforms. Meanwhile all of us in the 57% are paying for Bellotti, and will be for a long time. The state recently announced huge increases in the cost of covering past PERS largess, the Oregonian has covered this in detail, one story here.

Duck fan site wants to cut baseball

Fishduck.com is a great fan run website for seriously obsessed ducks, and an interesting example of how sports fan sites are taking over from old media. Today’s top story there is a long piece by Jerod Young, which comes down in favor of cutting Kilkenny’s baseball program, because of its $1.5 million deficit. Last thing I expected to read there!

There’s also a post by Charles Fischer, the site’s founder, on how the PAC-12 is cracking down on fans who repost video highlights and the sort of analysis he is famed for. Very sad, I learned a lot of football from those. 9/18/2012.