UT to cut 17 positions in athletics department

Move comes amid merger of programs

The University of Tennessee athletics department revealed on Monday that it will eliminate 17 full-time positions as part of its consolidation of the men's and women's athletics departments.

The 17 employees have been notified that their positions will be eliminated June 1, according to a release issued by Jimmy Stanton, associate athletic director for communications/football.

Other athletics department employees resigned, retired or were let go as part of the transition, though Tennessee's release did not disclose the number — or names — of those who have lost or will lose their jobs.

Dave Hart, UT vice chancellor/director of athletics, led this "initial phase of reorganization,'' Stanton said in the release. Hart was not available for interviews Monday and declined to comment on the elimination of personnel.

The restructuring plan has been reviewed by UT Chancellor Jimmy Cheek, the Office of the General Counsel and the UT Human Resources department, the release said.

According to the release, the restructuring will lead to a total savings of nearly $2.5 million in the 2012-13 budget in terms of personnel costs. The 17 layoffs will represent a savings of $1.03 million, and another $850,000 will be saved by the combination of unfilled positions being eliminated, resignations, retirements and terminations.

The release said another $625,000 will be saved by reducing the number of student employees, which includes managers, assistants and interns.

John Painter, a 1988 UT graduate who has become a well-known public relations specialist for the Vols the past 11 years, confirmed he is one of the employees who will be laid off.

"I've certainly enjoyed my 11-plus years here,'' said Painter, who once served as UT's primary media relations contact for football before spending last fall as the chief features writer for UTsports.com.

Painter's salary was $75,591, according to data UT released to the News Sentinel earlier this month.

Brian Davis, a 1997 UT graduate who spent the past eight years as an assistant media relations director working with softball, women's basketball and soccer, said he submitted his resignation March 12 that will take effect two weeks after the conclusion of the Lady Vols' softball season. Davis said he did not feel it was appropriate for him to comment on the reorganization.

Joan Cronan, who served as UT's women's athletic director for 28 years and assumed interim athletic director duties June 9 after Mike Hamilton resigned, could not be reached for comment.

Desiree Reed-Francois, previously listed as a senior associate athletic director, is not among the current administrators listed on the incomplete roster released by UT on Monday. Reed-Francois, who was making $111,211 according to UT records, declined to comment and referred questions on her employment status to Stanton.

Brad Bertani, who had served as associate athletic director for compliance since 2004, recently accepted a position as assistant athletic director for compliance at Ohio State University and began working there March 29.

Get Copyright Permissions © 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
Want to use this article? Click here for options!

© 2012 govolsxtra.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Comments » 112

ROCKYTOPBRAD writes:

Savings of $2.5 Million!! Dang, how much were they making per hour?

Fall_Creek_Vols writes:

Not good news for those affected.

Hacker38 writes:

$175.058 FOR YOU UT Grads...lol...or $70.70 per hour

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to Fall_Creek_Vols:

Not good news for those affected.

No it's not. Pretty sad. Can't really blame Hart as the decision to consolidate the athletic departments was made prior to his hiring if I'm not mistaking. Guess he's the one who had to decide who stayed and who went????Not sure. Anyway, the decision was made and unfortunately this is part of the process.

CoverOrange writes:

Mike, the number of employees being eliminated is 17. The number of positions being eliminated is 17 plus some number of already vacant positions or about to be vacated by retiring or resigning personnel.

FearlessFreep writes:

Not something to joke about. Getting laid off is real and hard to go through. Not surprised as there is a lot of duplicity within the men's/women's departments, but it's still tough to see.

NashvillePreds writes:

I'm interested in how you arrived at your number.
From what I see, the average salary of the positions being eliminated would be ~$59,000.
(1,003,000/17)
The cryptic, "$850,000 will be saved by the combination of unfilled positions being eliminated, resignations, retirements and terminations" leaves lots of room for interpretation.
I have not included the student figures.

Condolences to those whom are to lose their jobs.

rtrchatt writes:

Separate ath depts is just plain silly....

orangecountyvols writes:

Vols,

Could this troll Tennessee Tony also be added to the list? One things for certain, if there would finally be a worthwhile list.....deleting the trolls.....surely clowns like this would take their place in immortality.

9thSon writes:

They would not being doing this if ticket sales were good and the VOLS had a good football team.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Ah come on man. This is real life s#-t here. Some of these folks will have to up and move in order to find work and you're cracking jokes. I'm convinced you are a KNS planted troll because you've been around too long. Either that or maybe KNS is just that bad that they would allow you to exist on this site.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to 9thSon:

They would not being doing this if ticket sales were good and the VOLS had a good football team.

If that were the problem, wouldn't they cut some non-revenue sports? Could save a ton of money. The decision was made to consolidate the athletic departments. Nothing more, nothing less.

hallsguy writes:

When you consolidate two separate but similar departments or companies,you are going to have a number of redundancies. It's a matter of deciding which of two people are better.
To the commentator who recommended eliminating non-revenue sports, well thats all sports but football, men and girls basketball and maybe baseball. There is a Title IX so...

Hey,if they consolidated the city and county guvments,they'd save a lot of money eliminating redundant positions. Then if they could make the fee offices appointed, they could eliminate a lot of waste and fraud, maybe.

mountainbrook writes:

in response to TennesseeTonyT:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You could always add your own name to that list.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to hallsguy:

When you consolidate two separate but similar departments or companies,you are going to have a number of redundancies. It's a matter of deciding which of two people are better.
To the commentator who recommended eliminating non-revenue sports, well thats all sports but football, men and girls basketball and maybe baseball. There is a Title IX so...

Hey,if they consolidated the city and county guvments,they'd save a lot of money eliminating redundant positions. Then if they could make the fee offices appointed, they could eliminate a lot of waste and fraud, maybe.

Not really. If they couldn't afford it, they could cut it. Departments have abolished certain sports before. But my response was really intended to oppose those who keep blaming low ticket sales. They obviously couldn't/can't read the article and understand common logic.

OrangePride writes:

in response to TennesseeTonyT:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

And another year of mediocre posts like this!

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

Ah come on man. This is real life s#-t here. Some of these folks will have to up and move in order to find work and you're cracking jokes. I'm convinced you are a KNS planted troll because you've been around too long. Either that or maybe KNS is just that bad that they would allow you to exist on this site.

Well said.

thevoice writes:

$2,500,000, 17 people = $147,059 per person. Dang!

rainbow6 writes:

OK Now let us all watch closely to see how long it takes Hart to hire more staff to fill posts not needed today but in the future.....
Look for a couple of law suits to arise from this action.
Jay Graham is the only former Tennessee graduate on the football staff. He may be the only one in the entire athletic department.
Hart is certainly not about any traditions and i suppose we will have to wait to see where his loyalties lie.
I have bought season football and basket ball tickets for 50 years or more--- not this year. I am done!

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to thevoice:

$2,500,000, 17 people = $147,059 per person. Dang!

"The layoffs will represent a savings of $1.03 million," NOT 2.5 million for 17 layoffs.

CoverOrange writes:

in response to TennVolAlum:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

What are you implying? If it is 9 women's side vs 8 men's side, does that mean something?

CoverOrange writes:

in response to doesitmatter:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

No, this is for having to pay out $10M for former coaches that were not meeting expectations.

CoverOrange writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Saw an article this morning that noted how ticket prices for pro and college sports are plateauing or some cases decreasing. Theory is HDTV is so good fans are opting to stay home rather than pay exorbitant prices for a view point further away, without instant replay or their own personal refrigerator and potty.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Nah, we just have no "contributions" in areas where contributions aren't allowed.
This is money illegally spent on....
Oh, that's right, you are a gator fan, no need for me to explain.

SevenT writes:

in response to TennesseeTonyT:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Nice! Rest assured Hart is making room for "his yes-man people" at the Athletic Department. This is a perfect opportunity with the merger of Women and Mens Departments.

Getting Rid of Double D is next on the list

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Started reading, then got bored (around the third sentence) Please, if you wish to run your mouth, make it short.

born2ride writes:

Top 5 UT Cuts:

1. Mike Hamilton - Gone
2. Bruce Pearl - Gone
3. De-rek Dooley - next
4. Conzo Martin - another year or so
5. Pat Summitt - hate to see it but time for her to go

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Won't be long until Florida is laying off a certain football coach.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

Won't be long until Florida is laying off a certain football coach.

Exactly!

cincykid writes:

One thing everyone is missing is the athletic department's debt service from all the improvements to the stadium, practice facilities, etc.

Would be nice if KNS would print what this/these monthly payment(s) is/are. They must stretch out for decades.

These bills HAVE to be paid whereas human beings can simply be terminated from their jobs.

lemme_axya_this writes:

in response to orangeblooded83:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Title IX lets them bankrupt the athletic department in the name of equality.

tootsypop writes:

GET RID OF THE 10 NON UT GRADUATES HIRED LAST YEAR FOR THE ATHLETIC DEVELOPMENT DEPT; I THINK. YOU CANT SAY THEY WERE THE BEST QUALIFIED AS I HEARD A 2 WEEK CLASS WAS TAUGHT FOR THEM TO LEARN UT SPORTS HISTORY. I WAS TOLD THAT MOST WERE ALABAMA AND OHIO STATE GRADUATES. UT GRADUATES SHOULD BE FIRST PICKS FOR A JOB WHERE LOYALTY IS EVERYTHING.AS A UT FAN FOR A LONG TIME STUFF LIKE THIS MAKES ME SICK.
WHOMEVER LET THE UNIVERSITY RUN THE ATHLETIC DEPT. SHOULD BE COMMITTED TO CENTRAL STATE OF LIKE FACILITY.

eaglehim2 writes:

Comments on this site are generally just plain sick. How can you people claim to care about UT? Nothing seems to meet with your approval. No one coaching is adequate for you. Well, you had Coach Fulmer and you were successful in getting rid of him and Coach Pearl. Now you have the alternatives - suck on it.

D60 writes:

Jimmy Cheek should have been the first name on that list

notorange writes:

in response to 10seVol85:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Or better yet, look duplicity up in the dictionary and Pearls picture is there beside it...ha ha ha

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Here is what I actually know.
Will Mussomething lead a highly talented, deep in depth, FL team to 1 more regular season win than Dooley did with half the talent and no depth. I repeat, 1 more win. OMG, I think the baseball coach could have accomplished that!

CoverOrange writes:

in response to 10seVol85:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I work in the DoD too and see a lot of the VERA/VSIP rounds coming up to entice near retirees to go ahead to create openings for others. This article says retirements are expected. Are all those positions with retirees being eliminated or offered to employees on eliminated positions?

TKO writes:

This all started when the workers in TBA had the coke and hot dog cut. Karma

Indian_Bill writes:

If arseholes could fly..... This place would be an airport.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to Indian_Bill:

If arseholes could fly..... This place would be an airport.

Maybe, but at least it would smell nic....oh wait, nevermind.

62vol writes:

in response to NashvillePreds:

I'm interested in how you arrived at your number.
From what I see, the average salary of the positions being eliminated would be ~$59,000.
(1,003,000/17)
The cryptic, "$850,000 will be saved by the combination of unfilled positions being eliminated, resignations, retirements and terminations" leaves lots of room for interpretation.
I have not included the student figures.

Condolences to those whom are to lose their jobs.

The savings would include the cost of benefits and other overhead expenses.

VirtualMadness writes:

in response to Rich_Is_Re-born:

No it's not. Pretty sad. Can't really blame Hart as the decision to consolidate the athletic departments was made prior to his hiring if I'm not mistaking. Guess he's the one who had to decide who stayed and who went????Not sure. Anyway, the decision was made and unfortunately this is part of the process.

Neither is it good news for KNS posters who have been affected and ran off by loud mouths like you, Ole Rich_Is_Re-born. "Pretty sad. Can't really blame Won_and_Done (Scooner) as the decision as to his staying or leaving was made priorly due to his Blue alliances as decided by you, if I'm not mistaking. Guess you're the one who had to decide if he stayed or went???? Am sure. Anyway, you're decision was made Ole' Grand Poobah of KNS and UNFORTUNATELY that was part of the process."

Volunteer-Varmint writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Not only are you a cold-hearted POS, but you have no clue about this economy. It's called downsizing you moron. Ticket sales play a very small role in eliminating duplicity. Why pay two individuals to do the same job simply because they're part of men's or wowen's sports?

In the future, if you can't think of something smart to say, say nothing at all.

To the ones laid off, my heart goes out to you and your families. Good luck in the future and here's to hoping that you find work soon.

Go Big Orange.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Uhmmm.... Didn't say anything about Lanes, recruits,,,,ever. Guess you are confused. Hold on, I will find my shocked face. :o
There it is. DA.

underthehill writes:

in response to rainbow6:

OK Now let us all watch closely to see how long it takes Hart to hire more staff to fill posts not needed today but in the future.....
Look for a couple of law suits to arise from this action.
Jay Graham is the only former Tennessee graduate on the football staff. He may be the only one in the entire athletic department.
Hart is certainly not about any traditions and i suppose we will have to wait to see where his loyalties lie.
I have bought season football and basket ball tickets for 50 years or more--- not this year. I am done!

It is my understanding Hart was making in the area of $200,000 at bama..Hamilton was making in the $400,000 range..yet TN hired Hart for something in the range of $700,000..not sure how accurate these figures are but it makes no sense..then Hamilton brings how many cronies from bama (I think 2 but I'm not sure) and at what salaries?..then 17 Tenn people are losing their jobs..how many of these jobs could have been saved by letting a more competent staff employee take over when Hamilton left...Unlike you ..I have not recently bought tickets although I did have basketball and football season tickets in the past..I attended one football game with my grandson last year with tickets gave to me by a neighbor..I regret spending about $16 on $4.00 cokes and hot dogs..it won't happen again..I will not accept any free tickets...and wouldn't consider buying one...If UT people are not good enough to run the athletic dept ..then they are being penalized for attending UT...

SummittsCourt writes:

in response to TennesseeTonyT:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

idiot - 17 people lost their jobs and you come up with something stupid like this to say.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

"And don't blame me for the fact that UT has to lay off people in a bad economy "
Coming from someone in the second largest "Impacted state" in this bad economy, It's almost as if you people don't know what the he77 you're doing or saying down there.
Wait, let me check my "chads" before I cast my vote....
Yup, just not very bright.

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sorry, not choosing sides in your little (D) V (R) war, just pointing out that if a state has a preference, they should at least be smart enough to hit the button.I believe 49 of 50 states could do this....who was it again that couldn't manage such a simple task?

Clarkrm0706 writes:

in response to toddyboy:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Nope, never bragged about it, just suggested that a 1 game more win record, wasn't impressive either.
Suprised that you took offense to an anti gator (not pro Dooley) remark.
Hmm.., It's almost as if you are pro gator? I would be so shocked after all your pro UT comments.

NashvillePreds writes:

in response to BodeaneVol:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Your original conclusion of the cause of the consolidation is a reach at best. You surrendered any hint of objectivity loooong ago.

Want to participate in the conversation? Become a subscriber today. Subscribers can read and comment on any story, anytime. Non-subscribers will only be able to view comments on select stories.

Features