Originally posted on FishDuck.com:
Moneyball begins to take its toll within Ducks athletics
Reported by Jerod Young on September 18, 2012 inFishWrap, FishWrap Archive | 2 Comments
Missing: Have you seen this man? 2004 CWS Champion, six CWS appearances.
How much money did Oregon baseball take in as a gross profit last year?
Answer: A measly $649,981
Any idea how much the team spent in 2011?
No worries, there’s an answer to that too. But beware, it’s disturbing: $2.9 million.
Here’s a quick economics lesson. That is a deficit of roughly $1.54 million. It doesn’t take a Wall Street tycoon to realize this simple formula–If spending more than what is being earned, it’s going to lead to a problem.
So, what happens when a team, no matter the level, doesn’t generate a profit? The stench of extinction begins to fill the air. There were pleas after pleas to bring the collegiate baseball program back to Eugene. In 2008, the Ducks athletics department did right by the fans, raising the funds for a new stadium. With Howe Field converted to softball long ago and Civic Stadium beyond repair, to provide the University of Oregon with a new program it necessitated a new facility.
Next, the department needed an experienced, hall of fame-bound coach to craft an unproven team with many questions into stars. Instead of merely settling for very good, UO brought in the very best there is, George Horton, winner of the 2004 College World Series. He also took Fullerton to the World Series six times during his CSF tenure. Most recently, in 2012, Horton took his Ducks squad to the Super Regional round of the CWS.
The team defeated Austin Peay 6-5 in round one, snuck by Horton’s former school, Cal State Fullerton 7-5 and pounded Austin Peay into the ground for a second time by a score of 8-1. Oregon then played Kent State in a three game series, losing two games to one to end their season.
Horton then spent his summer coaching the USA Collegiate National Team, traveling to Cuba and The Netherlands, helping the U.S. team to a bronze medal at a European tournament.
In 2008 when Horton was hired, he was given a contract of four years, worth roughly $450,000 a year, plus over $100,000 in incentive clauses. Well, it’s 2012, those four years are up, and it’s that time of year where Coach Horton, his agent Greg Genske, and the University of Oregon talk contract extension.
One problem: The talking stopped, in August.
The preliminary deadline to come to an agreement was Monday, September 10th. That day has come and gone, and there’s still no word of an agreement on an extension. Genske and Horton were seeking a contract of around three years, worth $3 million, or roughly $600,000 per year. This contract would have made Horton the highest paid coach in the Pac-12.
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