Nebraska Chancellor Harvey Perlman has just finished a news conference on the hiring of former Miami Athletic Director Shawn Eichorst at Nebraska.
Before the presser started, the University released the terms of Eichorst's contract. It is a five year plan, with a salary of $973,000 annually. This salary, a far higher amount than what retiring Nebraska AD Tom Osborne was making ($321k at last report), would be one of the top 10 salaries in the country, just below what Oklahoma pays Joe Castiglione and above what Notre Dame pays Jack Swarbrick, two of the countries most influential Athletic Directors.
On top of Eichorst's salary, he will also receive a $750,000 dollar bonus if he stays the whole five years of his deal. Consequently, there is a "substantial" penalty if Eichorst leaves Nebraska early for, lets say, Wisconsin.
Through the first year of his contract, Eichorst has a $2 million dollar buyout, which goes down by $500k/year through this deal. The amount of this clearly shows that Perlman and the University realizes that there could be a potential of Eichorst being a possible replacement for Wisconsin's AD, Barry Alvarez.
Some other notes from Perlman's presser include:
- Tom Osborne, who will be retiring on January 1st and staying through July 1st, 2013 as Athletic Director Emeritus to see the transition through, was not as much involved in the decision as he would have hoped to be.
- Perlman only interviewed two candidates for the position, as Eichorst was one of them. That interview happened on Sunday, September 9th. That was the day after both Miami had their lone loss of the season at Kansas State, and Nebraska had their lone loss as well at UCLA.
- While Perlman did not disclose the other candidate, it was made clear to the press that there were no internal candidates interviewed for the position. This means that Jamie Williams, hired specifically by Osborne in June to seemingly be the AD in waiting after his run at the Academy of Art Institute in San Francisco. Paul Meyers, a important fund raiser to Nebraska Athletics, also did not receive an interview.
- Eichorst will start with the University on Tuesday, October 9th where he will be introduced at that time. Until he takes over on New Years Day, Eichorst will be a "Special Assistant to the Chancellor".
- The names of the "advisors" to Chancellor Perlman include Nebraska coaches Bo Pelini, Tim Miles and Connie Yori. Furthermore, B1G commissioner Jim Delany were also on the advisory panel.
One will have to wonder about when Eichorst said yes to this, with the announcing of Osborne's retirement and the sudden leak in the press on Wednesday night. Furthermore, there is another question of how Osborne truly feels about the Eichorst hire. From what it sounds like, Perlman had this interview with Eichorst and Osborne didn't know about it till possibly weeks later.
As my colleague James Stevenson put it so frankly:
Sounds like Harvey pulled the same kind of end around on Osborne, that Osborne pulled on Byrne back in 1997— James Stevenson (@JamesStevenson) October 4, 2012
And retiring AD Tom Osborne just released a statement on the hiring of Shawn Eichorst:
"I will do whatever I can to assist Shawn Eichorst in the transition process to ensure that the handoff to him leading the Athletic Department is as smooth as possible."
Buckle up folks.
Keep it here on Corn Nation for more news on the hiring of Shawn Eichorst and other Nebraska athletic news.