UNIVERSITY OF HAWAII ATHLETICS
Ranges for Jones, Shoji salaries OK’d by regents
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The price of success comes with a price tag, a hefty price tag when it means keeping successful coaches.
It also comes with a hefty debate.
In an executive session that lasted some 3 hours, the University of Hawaii Board of Regents yesterday agreed to extend the base salary range for 12 coaches at its flagship Manoa campus.
Heading the list is the range for head football coach: $329,142 to $935,544. Warrior coach June Jones currently makes $800,016, half of which is underwritten by donors.
Jones and Rainbow Wahine volleyball coach Dave Shoji -- whose range was extended by nearly $40,000 to $143,472 -- will be the first to benefit from the new pay scale. Both are in the final year of their contracts.
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Tough competition goes beyond that found on the field and the court. It also comes in the coaching arena.
Yesterday, the University of Hawaii's Board of Regents took a big step -- a potentially expensive step -- toward staying competitive in that game by approving the increased salary ranges for 12 coaching positions, most notably raising the limit on the football coach's salary from $199,992 to $935,544. The action came after 3 hours of an executive session at Leeward Community College.
In addition to football, baseball received a substantial adjustment -- $75,000 to $221,316. Women's water polo increased from $48,000 maximum to $86,244, while women's volleyball increased from $107,640 to $143,472.
The two highest-profile coaches in the department -- football's June Jones and Rainbow Wahine volleyball coach Dave Shoji -- will be the first to benefit from the increase. Both are entering the last year of their contracts.
If Jones' new contract is structured similarly to his current one (with matching funds from private sources), his new base salary could be more than $1.8 million.
"We wanted to have a salary structure in place, salary-range numbers that are already approved," UH athletic director Herman Frazier said. "This way, I don't have to come to the board every time we need to hire a coach. Some of the ranges were extended, some were clarified. Like June's. Football was never adjusted after his current salary was approved."
Although the football cap was $199,992, Jones' base salary is $800,016 -- half of which is paid by donors. He will be the third-highest-paid football coach this season in the nine-school Western Athletic Conference, behind Fresno State's Pat Hill ($999,236) and Boise State's Chris Petersen ($850,000).
In March, the BOR approved nearly doubling the cap for men's head basketball coach to $400,000 as well as nearly $50,000 increases for the salary ranges for associate and assistant men's basketball coaches.
The UH athletic department used the Division I-A Athletic Directors' Association salary survey in suggesting the increased ranges. In 2006, the average salary for a head football coach at a top-level school was $950,000, not including benefits, incentives and subsidized housing.
» Also approved yesterday was the ability for naming opportunities for the third floor of the Health, Physical Education and Recreation building, which houses the athletic department. The action allows for private funds to be raised to complete renovations of the HPER building.
Frazier said there were donors willing to put up big bucks to name certain areas -- up to a minimum of $1.3 million just for the football area. Other donor recognition opportunities would include 10 individual offices and the football video room.
Donations toward football would further the expansion plans for the complex. Currently there is 3,500 square feet of building that was never completed due to lack of funds when the complex was built decades ago.
"We're proposing to go in, finish that space and name that portion (for the donor)," Frazier said. "By moving football into that space, it would alleviate overcrowding in other areas of the department, especially our women's programs. It's the beginning of our future plans."
He said that the move would free up 12 offices for use by the department, which sponsors six other men's sports, 12 women's sports and coed sailing.
Plans for the football area include a reception area, 11 individual offices, a video room and two adjoining conference rooms. The private donations are expected to cover 110 percent of the cost of the renovation, with the extra moneys providing an endowment to cover maintenance costs.
» Although not on yesterday's agenda, Frazier said the gender-equity plan for the department has been approved, although no additional sports are planned. UH received an A-minus on last month's national report card issued by the Women's Sports Foundation.
"I think we're in really good shape," Frazier said, "but we also don't want to go backwards from a financial standpoint. It took us a while to get where we are."
The Western Athletic Conference only requires that its member schools sponsor football, men's and women's basketball and women's volleyball. Before Hawaii could offer another men's sport -- even if it was a non-scholarship sport -- another women's sport would have to be added.
Other athletic department-related items that were approved by the BOR:
» The contract with Panda Travel Inc. to remain as the in-house full-service travel agency for the athletic department. The $1,700 annual contract is for three years -- through July 31, 2010 -- with the option to renew for two additional one-year terms.
Frazier said there were three companies that put in bids, two local and one from the mainland.
» Change in contract wording regarding women's assistant basketball coaches and bonuses received for conference championships and postseason appearances to conform with those of assistant coaches in other sports.