UO Law Dean Michael Moffitt gives 5 year review talk

I couldn’t listen to it all, but it seems Knight Law School Dean Michael Moffitt managed to avoid any mention of the $10M subsidy from CAS tuition money that he was given – by the office of his wife, VPFA Jamie Moffitt – to pay for scholarships for law students, to keep UO law LSAT’s score and US News ranking out of the basement.

Also no honest discussion of Moffitt’s various failed attempts to exploit Brad Shelton’s budget model and siphon off enough undergrad credit hours from CAS to be able to repay the $10M debt he now owes CAS. Yes, I know that makes no sense, but here’s Moffitt trying to get some good press for himself in the NY Times:

“The problem is that we have been selling only one product,” Mr. Moffitt said. “But if you are getting a business degree, you need to know about contract law. City planners need to know about land-use law. So we at Oregon are educating not just J.D. students.

“Demand is through the roof,” he added. “I feel like I am living a business school case study.”

However, like so many business school case studies, Moffitt’s turned out to be a scam. He’d hid that from his faculty, but the Senate Curriculum Committee got to the truth and cancelled the classes.

Moffitt’s idea of a bright spot? Rob Illig’s summer sports law institute:

Rob Illig’s summer sports law institute now advertising on UO Matters

No surprise the google algorithm matched us. I hear Illig’s program is doing OK. In contrast Law Dean Michael Moffitt’s Alternative Dispute Resolution program must have been hit hard by the recent NYT series exposing endemic corporate abuses of arbitration. Moffitt’s previous NYT exposure – the “business school case study” – ended pretty disastrously. His 5-year-review as Dean is underway now. Thanks for the google revenue Rob, and I’ll throw in a free link to the program for viewers who might see a different ad, here.

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NCAA FAR Tim Gleason will report to the IAC, 1PM Wed in 109 Friendly

Update: Some brief notes from the meeting today: The PAGIA has not yet met this year. Gleason believes Kim Sheehan (Advertising) is still the chair. Gleason gives an interesting report on some of the topics that he and the PAC-12 and FBS conferences have and will be voting on (including many of obvious academic importance). All apparently done without faculty input. This was followed by a full and frank discussion focused on the athletic department’s unwillingness to meet with the IAC, and the Jaqua Center’s unwillingness to share data. As usual the student members did a great job with questions.

Gleason brought up the use of the allegedly derogatory phrase “Jock Box”, which originally appeared in print in the New York Times, in their 2010 “University of Nike” story. It turns out Gleason has a point, of sorts, according to the well know urban dictionary website:

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One of the student representatives then explained to Gleason that the phrase reflected legitimate concerns by non-athletic students over the fact they are not allowed to use the box, but have to pay for it. Links to Greg Bolt’s stories about this are here. This year the subsidy is $2.4M, including $11K to engrave the $140K worth of Macbooks that the athletes get:

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Why do UO’s regular students have to pay for all this out of their tuition? Why does Gleason expect them to do so happily?

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10/27/2015: Yes, of course it’s a public meeting.

Hopes are high that Senate Intercollegiate Athletics Committee Chair Andy Karduna (Human Phys) will be able to successfully follow up on the excellent work that Kurt Krueger (Printing) did as chair last year, in the aftermath of the basketball rape allegation cover-up. The less said about the disastrous leadership of 2013-14 chair Rob Illig (Law) the better, although I notice Krueger has a brief history report on the agenda.

The highlight of the meeting will no doubt be the report from UO’s new Faculty Athletics Representative, Tim Gleason (Journalism).

UO’s previous FAR, Jim O’Fallon (Law), was also on the NCAA Infractions Committee, where he contributed to the ruin of many a young student-athlete. Here’s his committee’s report on UConn basketball player Nate Miles:

As stated in the committee’s public infractions report, this case centers on the “extraordinary steps” taken by the university to recruit a top prospective student-athlete to its men’s basketball program. The director of athletics stated it was the “most intense” he has ever seen the head coach about the recruitment of a prospective student-athlete. The committee found that in his “zeal” to get the prospect admitted to the university and eligible to compete, the head coach allowed a booster, who was a certified agent by the National Basketball Association, to be involved in the recruitment process. Further, the committee found that the head coach “overlooked indications” that this booster might be breaking NCAA rules. Specifically, the booster provided the prospect with impermissible inducements, including the payment of at least a portion of the expenses for the young man’s foot surgery;

The members of the Committee on Infractions who reviewed this case include Dr. Dennis Thomas, the commissioner of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference and chair of the Committee on Infractions. Other members are Britton Banowsky, commissioner of Conference USA; John S. Black, attorney; Eleanor Myers, faculty athletics representative and law professor at Temple University; Josephine (Jo) R. Potuto, the Richard H. Larson Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Nebraska College of Law; Roscoe C. Howard, Jr., attorney; and James O’Fallon, law professor and faculty athletics representative for University of Oregon.

That’s right, some booster paid for an athlete’s foot-surgery, so the NCAA ruined his life. The athlete’s life, that is. There were some claims that the NCAA’s Infractions Committee violated HIPPA in this investigation, but I don’t know what came of that. The NYT reported in 2011 on the consequences of this ruling for “the prospect”:

The former University of Connecticut basketball recruit Nate Miles is effectively homeless. He moves from friend’s couch to friend’s couch, still recovering from a violent assault that left him with a stab wound and a punctured lung and a monthlong stay in the hospital.

Miles, 23, has obligations to go with his troubles, two sons from different mothers, and no great confidence in where his next meal is coming from. A life playing basketball, the sport he once planned to make a grand career of, seems unlikely. He was fired from the Premiere Basketball League’s Dayton, Ohio, team, and he now says he cannot afford to play at a local recreation center because he lacks the $10 fee.

… “I don’t feel like it’s fair, but it’s life; life isn’t fair,” Miles said.

NCAA enforcer and UO FAR Jim O’Fallon NCAA player Nate Miles

But life is more than fair for the FAR. We paid O’Fallon $97K to do this job, half-time:

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And now we’re paying Tim Gleason $100K:

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This money – and all the expenses of the FAR office – come out of UO’s academic budget. So the IAC should expect a pretty thorough report from our faculty colleague Tim Gleason, on what he has been doing, and plans to do, to ensure that the Duck’s revenue student-athletes get something besides an A+ in their “Art of the Athlete” class, in return for all the money they bring in for their coaches.

IAC Agenda:

Location: 109 Friendly
Day: Wednesday, October 28, 2015
Time: 1-2 pm

Tentative Schedule
1:00 Welcome and introductions: Chair
1:10 A Brief History: Kurt Krueger, Immediate Past Chair
1:20 Faculty Athletic Representative (FAR) report/comments: Tim Gleason
1:30 Role of IAC Executive Committee: Chair
1:35 Discussion of the charge of the committee: Chair
1:45 Open Discussion – member questions, concerns, priorities, agenda items, etc.
1:55 Scheduling of future meetings

Kim Sheehan and Tim Gleason won’t share PAGIA agendas, Coltrane wants $151.78

3/20/2015 update:

From: “Thornton, Lisa” <pubrec@uoregon.edu>
Date: March 20, 2015 at 4:39:23 PM PDT
Subject: Public Records Request 2015-PRR-201

Dear Mr. Harbaugh:

The University of Oregon has received your revised public records request for “just the b) part” of your request made 02/26/2015, attached. The office has at least some documents responsive to your request. By this email, the office is providing you with an estimate to respond to your requests.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $151.78.

3/19/2015 update: Coltrane’s PR Office wants $732.92 to show what his secret athletics committee is doing

The University of Oregon, Office of Public Records has received your public records request for “any documents sent or received by the President’s Office relating to former President Gottfredson’s decision to establish the “President’s Advisory Group on Intercollegiate Athletics”, the determination of its membership, and its activities since”.  The office is now providing an estimate to respond to your request.

The office estimates the actual cost of responding to your request to be $732.92. Upon receipt of a check made payable to the University of Oregon in that amount, the office will proceed to locate, copy, and provide the records you have requested that are not exempt from disclosure.  Your check may be sent to the attention of Office of Public Records, 6207 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-6207.

Maybe the PAGIA Chair, Kim Sheehan (Advertising), or UO’s new FAR Tim Gleason (former Journalism Dean) will help make these public records public?

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Gottfredson unable to find qualified “Faculty Athletics Representative”

9/22/2014 update: Gottfredson’s last official act before skipping town with his $940K was to appoint former journalism dean Tim Gleason to replace longtime NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Jim O’Fallon (Law), after presumptive heir Rob Illig (Law) crashed and burned with his viral “I’m worth $1M, so screw you unemployed law grads” campaign. The FAR’s are having their national meeting in November in New Orleans. For more info about what the FAR is supposed to do to balance the interests of big-time Duck sports and its multi-million dollar employees with our academic mission, try here. Meanwhile the UO Senate needs to decide what to do about Gleason – specifically this proposed legislation from Pedro Garcia-Caro calling for a Senate role in appointing a new FAR.

7/21/2014 update:

This winter Gottfredson set up a search committee to find a replacement for Jim O’Fallon (Law), who has had the FAR job for 25 years and who been the subject of repeated Senate motions and reports calling for a review and replacement. The Senate will take this up again in the fall. Andy Karduna (Human Phys) agreed to chair the committee, despite Gottfredson’s secrecy requirements. Karduna reported to the IAC and the Senate that the secrecy (and presumably Gottfredson’s control-freak job description and the requirement of a year-long apprenticeship to O’Fallon) kept several qualified and interested faculty from applying. Rumor has it that Rob Illig (Law) wanted the job, but his $1 Million salary goal was a bit too steep. The appointment was supposed to be made in June, but apparently there are still no takers.

6/20/2014 update: Gottfredson appoints IAC-lite, to evade faculty oversight of athletics

The day after President Gottfredson got the EPD report on the basketball rape allegations he decided to dismantle the Senate Intercollegiate Athletic Committee and appoint his own handpicked group of faculty to a new “Advisory Group”. Still no word on who Gottfredson will appoint as FAR in training. At least a few qualified and interested faculty refused to apply under the terms of Gottfredson’s secret search. The Senate will vote on legislation for a new search in the Fall, in any case.

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Rob Illig to replace Michael Moffitt as UO Law Dean?

Sure, Rob Illig has had some not so great press recently, but this new KEZI puff piece about his sports law camp makes him look pretty good. And while Dean Michael Moffitt got a mention in the NYT a few years ago, it appears he was less than completely honest about the “business school case study” he’d been running on the side. It promptly collapsed when his professors found out what he’d been doing. Under Dean Moffitt UO Law has been plummeting in the rankings, and the enrollment decline has been about double that for other law schools. So are Rob Illig and sports law UO’s future?

Rumor down at the faculty club bar is that Moffitt will meet with the faculty at 12:30 September 4, to talk about how to respond to the just completed ABA accreditation report, and what to do next.

While Moffitt’s $292,800 dean’s salary may be just a third of the $1M that Illig is worth, somehow I doubt he’d say no.

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UO law school prof angry about plan to use his raise for student fellowships

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4/17/2014 update: And now the ABA Journal.

These emails have gone viral, with many hundreds of comments on law blogs like Lawyers Guns and Money, Tax Law Blog, Above The Law, Professor Bainbridge, JDU, Eschaton, Leiter’s Law School Reports, something called Gawker, and Jeff Manning’s piece in the Oregonian:

This was bad viral. The University of Oregon Law School professor’s wild rant about his compensation made Illig look petty and unsympathetic at the same time. More importantly, it shined a light on the raging debate about higher education, the value of advanced degrees and the mushrooming debt encumbering a generation of students.

The official UO law school blog – which, in an admirable demonstration of transparency actually allows comments, has responded:

To The Law School Community:

We’ve been getting some questions about a resolution brought to the last faculty meeting, and we’d like to share some information. Recently the University announced across-the-board cost of living adjustments and merit pay increases to take effect later in the year. A group of law faculty came up with the idea to divert the law school’s portion of the faculty merit pay funds to a post-graduate fellowship program for new law grads, in lieu of accepting a pay increase. Last Friday, this group brought this idea as a resolution (included below) to the regularly scheduled faculty meeting. A wide majority of those present voted to approve the resolution—in addition, a majority of the full faculty support the resolution.

We brought the matter to the Provost and although he is supportive of our goals he cannot bend the University rules to make this creative idea happen. However, we remain committed to finding ways to fund post-graduate opportunities and address other employment issues facing our graduates. We invite your comments and questions on this blog or one-on-one.

(I am not the Faculty Spokesperson. To avoid the appearance of speaking for everyone on the faculty, here I will include the names of some faculty who agreed to sign this statement (and I don’t mean to imply that those not included do not support it): Stuart Chinn, Michael Fakhri, Caroline Forell, Liz Frost, Erik Girvan, Carrie Leonetti, Mohsen Manesh, Roberta Mann, Michelle McKinley, Margie Paris, Jen Reynolds, Liz Tippett.)

Here is the text of the resolution from 4/11/2014:

The faculty recommends that the dean proceed with conversations with the Provost and the President regarding: reallocating funds for proposed faculty merit raises toward student fellowships, with a focus at present on post graduate student fellowships. If this proposal is approved, the faculty will revisit this reallocation of funds after two-three years.

4/14/2014: Several members of the law school email lists (which included staff, secretaries etc.) have forwarded these two emails from professor Rob Illig (Law) about a plan apparently floated by Law Dean Michael Moffitt (paid $292,800 after a recent raise) to deal with the law school’s enrollment problems and US News ranking, which has fallen from #80 to #100 since Moffitt took over in 2011.

The plan? Cancel raises for the faculty, and use the money to fund a program to give non-profits money to hire UO law school graduates, boosting the employment numbers that go into the US News rank.

Here are UO Law salaries for 2012-13, with comparison to other AAU publics:

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Associate Professor Illig is not happy with Moffitt’s plan, or with the lack of transparency in how it was presented to the law faculty (who apparently voted to approve it).

Subject: Re: law-fac-staff: What happened to Oregon Law?
From: Rob Illig <rillig@uoregon.edu>
To: Rob Illig <rillig@uoregon.edu>
Cc: Dustin Littrell <littrell@uoregon.edu>, law-faculty Faculty <law-faculty@lists.uoregon.edu>, “law-fac-staff@lists.uoregon.edu Staff List” <law-fac-staff@lists.uoregon.edu>, Dan Miller <dmiller@uoregon.edu>

Michael,

To my shock and amazement, I just learned – three days after the faculty
meeting – that someone (you? the faculty?) is trying to take away my
one-in-a-decade chance at a raise WITHOUT MY KNOWLEDGE OR CONSENT.

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UO Law to offer summer sports-law program

Law School Dean Michael Moffitt’s previous efforts to find money to offset declining law enrollments have not gone as smoothly as say, a business school case study. The latest effort is a 5 week sports-law summer program. Tuition is $10,000 for 6 credits, and an extra $1,000 will get you a room in Pat Kilkenny’s famous Courtside Apartments. Under VP Brad Shelton’s budget model the law school will be able to keep most of the revenue, since summer programs don’t pay the Johnson Hall administrative tax.

Director Rob Illig has lined up an impressive list of lecturers from UO and other schools, including LCB Professor Dennis Howard, whose 2004 paper on how Duck athletic fundraising sucks money from the academic side is still the definitive piece on the subject. And I’m not just saying that because he cites me.

Maybe Illig can also get UO Law Professor Dave Frohnmayer to lecture on how UO’s random pot testing policy is obviously unconstitutional?

Perhaps UO Law Professor Emeritus and Faculty Athletics Representative Jim O’Fallon on how UO AAD Jeff Hawkins persuaded the Oregon legislature to pay to enforce the NCAA cartel’s rule against letting players get help bargaining with coaches? O’Fallon must also have some amusing anecdotes about Nate Miles.

And Howard Slusher and Pat Kilkenny, on how to rent a university president for less than Phillip Morris and BP paid?

Randy Geller’s former boss and General Counsel Emerita Melinda Grier could co-teach with Dave Frohnmayer on inflating coach’s pensions, and why you should never put anything in writing. And Geller himself would be good for a few minutes on how to divert the academic side’s money to NCAA athletic infractions lawyers.

But the big draw would be a Phil Knight keynote on how to get state legislators to put your alma mater $235M in debt for a basketball arena, then come back a few years later asking for $200M in bonds to fund cancer research – at OHSU.

All in all UO has some great sports law resources, although past efforts to use the Go Ducks! meme to recruit top law students do not seem to have panned out.

Intercollegiate Athletics Committee retreat and Open Meetings

10/28/13: Intercollegiate Athletics Committee retreat:

In the absence of formal minutes from the meeting, I’m posting a brief summary. The agenda for the retreat, held Tuesday 10/22, was set by IAC Chair Rob Illig (Law) as follows:

3:00 – 3:15 – IAC Chair Rob Illig leads introductions
3:15 – 3:30 – Senate President Margie Paris introduces our official charge
3:30 – 4:30 – AD Rob Mullens and members of his staff, as appropriate, present information about the athletic department and address recent email questions
4:30 – 4:45 – short break
4:45 – 5:30 – Faculty Athletics Rep Jim O’Fallon discusses the relationship between the UO and the NCAA
5:30 – 5:45 – General Counsel Randy Geller presents information about the Open Meetings Law
5:45 – 6:00 – IAC discusses and approves confidentiality policy
6:00 – 6:30 – break-out sessions for working groups (please bring your calendars)
6:30 – 7:00 – for anyone interested, wine and cheese and easy socializing

Randy Geller didn’t show. In his absence the Chair read an email from him, opining that Oregon’s Open Meeting Law did not apply to IAC meetings, and another saying that UO would defend the faculty, if we were sued for not following that law.

At least that’s what I think Geller’s emails said. Illig first said he thought he had already forwarded the emails to the IAC. Then he wrote several times to say that he would forward them. Now he is refusing to share them with committee members. He says that Geller has decided to write another opinion on these matters, and that he will share this he receives it from the General Counsel.

9/19/2013 update: Senate Intercollegiate Athletics Committee meets to discuss transparency, confidentiality, e rispetto

The IAC met today to elect a chair. Professors Harbaugh (Economics) and Karduna (Human Phys) gave stirring speeches, but were crushed by Rob Illig (Law), who got 9 of 16 votes cast. Illig is the presumptive contender to replace Jim O’Fallon (Law, emeritus, 24 years as FAR, still without a review) as UO’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative next year. So this will be something of a baptism by fire, and provide some valuable information on his suitability for that important job. We’ll keep you updated, with respect, and within the limits of whatever confidentiality policy the IAC adopts.

9/17/2013: UO’s IAC met this afternoon in a mediated session, moderated by noted dispute resolution expert Eric Lindauer. Lindauer was brought in by Senate President Margie Paris. The objective was to help make the committee, which deals with many contentious high-stakes issues, function more effectively.

Almost all faculty, staff, and student members were present, along with AD Rob Mullens, AAD Lisa Peterson, AAD for Finance Eric Roedl, AAD for Strategic Communications Craig Pintens, the new AAD for NCAA compliance Jody Sykes, and UO’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Jim O’Fallon. Lorraine Davis was absent.

We discussed many things, most notably:

  1. Civil/respectful/professional/productive meetings and communication.
  2. Mechanisms to ensure the athletics department regularly provides the IAC with information related to its charge, which includes academic issues involving student-athletes, financial information, large donations, adding or dropping sports, new athletic facilities, and hiring of coaches.
  3. A confidentiality agreement for IAC members. The initial draft language for this is below.
Some related documents include:

Draft UO IAC Confidentiality Agreement, from today’s meeting.

For reference, the FAC’s confidentiality policy states:

The Faculty Advisory Council is responsible for providing the President and other Administration officials with faculty opinion and counsel on the wide range of university affairs. In its relations with the President, the Administration, and with the faculty, the Faculty Advisory Council shall act either on request or on its own initiative. To fulfill its mission, members of the Council recognize that its deliberations must remain confidential. The quality and the effectiveness of the advice we give depend on a free and frank discussion of issues, in which all participants can voice their opinions without fear that their positions will be divulged or attributed to them outside of the Council. Furthermore, the FAC often treats issues that are in the public domain. Any information presented at a FAC meeting that is not in the public record will remain confidential. All discussion about information that is in the public record will also remain confidential. Participants in the FAC will not refer to or divulge Council deliberations and comments with specificity in discharging their obligations as faculty, administrators, or staff. By pledging to adhere to the confidentiality of its proceedings, participants in the FAC commit to fulfilling their legislative charge. The Council shall be the forum where the President and other Administration officials seek faculty advice on all important decisions that affect the university before they are implemented, and where the issues that inform these decisions will be considered thoroughly and with mutual respect.

Dev Sinha to replace O’Fallon as NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative?

6/14/2013: President Gottfredson has to decide who will replace retired UO law professor Jim O’Fallon very soon. O’Fallon has been the FAR for 23 years – since back when he actually was faculty – without ever going through a performance review. This is a clear violation of OUS rules, and in addition the 2004 UO Task Force Report on Athletics – signed by Dave Frohnmayer and then AD Bill Moos – specifically called for a review of O’Fallon.

Bullet point #2:

This never happened. O’Fallon’s contract is hereHis current deal is set to expire in two weeks: 


The FAR job is a pretty sweet one for a professor who likes sports and junkets to the UO games – paid for out of the academic budget of course. Rumor down at the faculty club horse barn is that the jockeying to replace O’Fallon has begun in earnest. Prominent among likely contenders would be former Intercollegiate Athletics Committee chair Dev Sinha, who recently demonstrated his loyalty to the Ducks with this impassioned 32 page powerpoint to the UO Senate, opposing the motion to get the athletic department to follow Task Force recommendation #1 on contributions to the academic side (posted with permission):

You can catch Dev’s lengthy speech to the Senate, cut short by President Kyr out of mercy to the Senate and Prof Sinha, here:


Unfortunately for professor Sinha the motion to end the subsidies and start the contributions passed 19 to 4, so it seems unlikely the Senate would be happy with his appointment. 
Other likely contenders include UO law professor Rob Illig, in his second year on the IAC, and biology professor and former IAC Chair and UO representative to the Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics Nathan Tublitz. Or President Gottfredson could appoint longtime Duck booster Lorraine Davis, an AD designee to the IAC who never shows her face, and whose current contracts are also set to expire in a few weeks: