Heather Mason relieved of duties as UT's associate strength and conditioning coach

Heather Mason

Heather Mason

Heather Mason has been relieved of her duties as associate strength and conditioning coach at the University of Tennessee.

UT spokesperson Jimmy Stanton said via text message Thursday night that Mason had been “placed on administrative leave until June 3 at which time she will no longer by employed by the University.”

No reason was given for the move. Mason could not be reached for comment.

One of three plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed against the university last fall, Mason was in her 10th season at UT. Her biography in the women’s basketball media guide said that in addition to her work with the sport, she was “responsible for all facets of training 11 Lady Vol teams.”

Mason, along with associate director of sports medicine Jenny Moshak, filed a lawsuit against the university in U.S. District Court last October, alleging discrimination and retaliation. The third plaintiff is Collin Schlosser, a former Lady Vols associate director for strength and conditioning who was laid off last April.

The suit, which was filed by attorneys Keith D. Stewart and Stacey C. Sisco, alleged that the university had created “a testosterone wall” effectively prohibiting women from earning equal play and “further denying Plaintiffs the opportunity to advance their careers by working in men’s athletics at the University of Tennessee.”

Mason, Moshak and Schlosser originally filed a discrimination complaint in February of 2010 with UT’s office of Equity and Diversity in which they each compared their salary to an employee from men’s athletics, whose primary responsibilities centered around football. The claim, which twice was rejected by the university, was taken to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

In the original complaint, Mason compared her position to four men who had held the title of men’s director of strength and conditioning in the three previous years. All made at least $20,000 more than Mason’s salary of $80,000.

Mason’s salary has increased since and was earning $102,500, according to the News Sentinel database for UT employees.

Mason, who received her undergraduate degree at Cincinnati in 1996, came to Tennessee after five years at Notre Dame and two at Cincinnati. She was mentored by current Ohio State director of strength and conditioning Mickey Marotti while at Cincinnati and Notre Dame.

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Comments » 86

volman2008 writes:

ANOTHER BAMA GRAD GETS HIRED BY U.T.

atnvol#283282 writes:

Moral of the story is don't bite the hand that feeds you.

WetumpkaThumpa writes:

Moshak next?

WetumpkaThumpa writes:

$102,000 bucks as an assistant strength coach for women's sports! Nicodemus Christopher the men's basketball strength coach makes a little over $50,000! Where's the discrimination there? She should have kept her mouth shut and collected her nice salary.

Witch_Doctors writes:

Witch Doctor say more cancer removed.
Bones never lie.

Fall_Creek_Vols writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

Moshak next?

Would it get that obvious?

Witch_Doctors writes:

in response to KnoxVegas88:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Witch Doctor say their IP addresses are blocked by the Nickelodeon website and really if they are "against something" then you know to be "for it". lol.
Bones never lie.
*kudos to the Admin to get rid of these (intentional) saboteurs of the AD dept/university!

eVOLved writes:

in response to mempuss:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Whatever the reason, it'd be interesting if she wins a big EEOC claim.

New topic: I bet she can bench press more than you.

thevoice writes:

When women's sports start making money, so will it's employees.

volspaws writes:

What a clown....take your resume into the private sector and see if you can land a six figure gig.

keepitreal4vols writes:

Life lesson: Don't bite the hand that feeds you.

laraccoon writes:

her photo looks a little "steriodal"

chipmurphy461 writes:

Making $80,000 a year, especially doing something like this...come on she should've enjoyed it, not sue for discrimination. Can't piss off the almighty employer

realtallshorty#241669 writes:

in response to collegegrovebilly:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

He's a little boy. Boys hire boys

WetumpkaThumpa writes:

in response to thevoice:

When women's sports start making money, so will it's employees.

Exactly, we have a women's assistant strength coach filing a complaint about a $100,000 salary! But our Head Men's Basketball strength coach makes $50,000 and hasn't complained? Nicodemus, call your lawyer!

NashvillePreds writes:

Good riddance.
I'm sure the only reason it took this long was due to internal counsel assuring UT that they were within their legal rights.
Don't let the door hit you Heather...

budd#207344 writes:

in response to atnvol#283282:

Moral of the story is don't bite the hand that feeds you.

No moral of the story is you don't fire somebody who is suing you unless got a realllllly good reason. If you don't have that reason then double the initial award your stupidity was going to bring to the plantiff.

MissUT writes:

She had been at UT for 10 years and was responsible for all 11 Lady Vols sports...so she was obviously worth her salary. It's hardly fair to compare her to another coach who is resposible for 1 sport. If a man was hired for the same job, he would demand a larger salary than was paid to her. Our Lady Vols are losing every step of the way since the idiots in charge decided to group all the sports under 1 athletic department.

WetumpkaThumpa writes:

in response to budd#207344:

No moral of the story is you don't fire somebody who is suing you unless got a realllllly good reason. If you don't have that reason then double the initial award your stupidity was going to bring to the plantiff.

Punctuation? A woman strength coach making 100,000 bucks a year that is complaining about a salary? Same school with a men's coach making $50,000 a year and he's not complaining? You look stupid, give it up title 9.

bunker_hill#300251 writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

Punctuation? A woman strength coach making 100,000 bucks a year that is complaining about a salary? Same school with a men's coach making $50,000 a year and he's not complaining? You look stupid, give it up title 9.

Did you not read the same article? She was complaining when she was making $80,000. It said she has since been raised to that over $100,000 figure. Also as everyone knows, seniority usually rules in salaries. When the men's bball strength coach has been here 8-10 years, he'll be making 6 figures and not his $50,000.

Henley-Street-Bridge writes:

Gloria Ray is hiring, she'll (he'll) be ok.

ONUV writes:

thank you Dave Hart!

Biggie writes:

Yankee

volfan2002 writes:

First off we don't even know if Hart fired her Holly might have let her go. The reason could have been the conditioning of the team. Still a lot of information needed before we land on one side or the other.

gregorygovols writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

$102,000 bucks as an assistant strength coach for women's sports! Nicodemus Christopher the men's basketball strength coach makes a little over $50,000! Where's the discrimination there? She should have kept her mouth shut and collected her nice salary.

She received 102,500 dollars because she was the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Women's athletic Department a little over a year or two ago. When the two athletic departments became one, the Head Strength Coach for football (at the time - Ron McKeefery) became the Director of Strength and Conditioning and Mason became second in command. She was never an assistant. You can’t compare her salary to an assistant on the Olympic strength staff (N. Christopher). Last summer there weren’t any football strength coaches other than McKeefery making more than six figures. Football strength coaches always get paid more than Olympic strength coaches…no matter the school…Head, associate or assistant. N. Christopher is making more than he deserves. If comments are going to be made about a subject, know about the subject.

gregorygovols writes:

in response to chipmurphy461:

Making $80,000 a year, especially doing something like this...come on she should've enjoyed it, not sue for discrimination. Can't piss off the almighty employer

What do you mean ‘doing something like this’? Do you even know the role and responsibilities of a Strength and Conditioning Coach…especially at a school in the SEC? Would you have the same comment if I were to tell you that a Strength and Conditioning Coach at Tennessee made 275,000 last year for ‘doing something like this’?...because that was his salary. If you feel the need to comment on a subject, know about the subject.

gregorygovols writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

Exactly, we have a women's assistant strength coach filing a complaint about a $100,000 salary! But our Head Men's Basketball strength coach makes $50,000 and hasn't complained? Nicodemus, call your lawyer!

She was not an assistant strength coach. A little over a year or two ago she was the head of the strength and conditioning for the women’s athletic department. When the men’s and women’s athletic departments became one, the head strength coach for football became the director of the strength and conditioning department and she became second in command. That is why she was making the amount that she was. N. Christopher is not the head men’s basketball strength coach. He is an assistant on the Olympic staff that is responsible for men’s basketball. His salary is acceptable for the program at a school whose men’s team is as successful (or not) as it is. He has done nothing to deserve more that what he is currently getting. She is complaining because before the two departments joined, she, as head of the women’s strength department was getting paid less than 100,000 and the head of the men’s strength department was getting paid 2.5 times as much. Whether it is right or wrong for her to file a case is irrelevant for this conversation. My point is that before someone comments on a subject, they need to know about the subject.

jakethevolguy writes:

in response to eVOLved:

Whatever the reason, it'd be interesting if she wins a big EEOC claim.

New topic: I bet she can bench press more than you.

She did have nice pecs!! :-)

SevenT writes:

Good deal! Cut the Title IX trash!!

civilianvol_formerly_marinevol writes:

Somehow I don't think this helps UT defend the retaliation aspect of the lawsuit. Even if you're not guilty of discrimination, you are still prohibited from retaliating against an employee for filing a discrimination complaint. They had better be able to prove a compelling reason to fire her which is not related to the lawsuit. Otherwise, they just shot themselves in the foot.

CrankE writes:

Maybe Pilot Flying J has some openings?

Geofffourmyle writes:

Leave it to a lawyer to come up with the phrase "testosterone wall."

Walt

UT '81

BigBadVol writes:

in response to collegegrovebilly:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

It's impossible to make you understand how ignorant your comments are on a regular basis.

Geofffourmyle writes:

in response to collegegrovebilly:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You are right but don't hold your breath.

Walt

UT '81

banners writes:

What a bunch of knuckle draggers you all are! What happened, did she get the house and all when she left your DA for a younger man? Obviously, women have gotten the better of you from your attitudes and crude comments.

Hart has dismantled the only respectable division of UT Sports, as if it would make the constantly plagued with misconduct men's sports look better. The creep pushed the best basketball coach in the nation into retirement, ignored employees with decades of experience and success, even took away a whole marketing division by dropping the Lady Vols logo.

Hart is a complete idiot. So is the UT administration if it thinks in this day and age it can discriminate against women in salaries. Mason, Moshak and Schlosser all are ASSOCIATES, not assistants, and work for all 11 women's sports. You can't compare their salary to a football trainer.

You think the athletics department is broke now, wait until they lose all these lawsuits! Worse yet, the University will lose all the experience and proven success of employees who created one of the premier sports departments in the nation and delivered eight national championships.

Hart isn't qualified to carry their lunch.

UT administration has forgotten that, like all major U.S. universities, the school has a majority of female students that fork over the money that pays their salaries. They ought to be grateful.

chsdrop writes:

Don't know if great loss. Lady Vols always seemed to be injured.

volboy81 writes:

this woman gets paid an unreal salary at a university that was first to view womens sports as a priority and yet she still complains and whines about her pay. Since she has a current lawsuit against UT, Im sure they had a VERY GOOD reason to fire her, just like they did Debby Jennings, who refused to accept the new way of doing things in the UTAD, pouted about it and had a bad attitude. I hope Moshak is next!

laraccoon writes:

in response to banners:

What a bunch of knuckle draggers you all are! What happened, did she get the house and all when she left your DA for a younger man? Obviously, women have gotten the better of you from your attitudes and crude comments.

Hart has dismantled the only respectable division of UT Sports, as if it would make the constantly plagued with misconduct men's sports look better. The creep pushed the best basketball coach in the nation into retirement, ignored employees with decades of experience and success, even took away a whole marketing division by dropping the Lady Vols logo.

Hart is a complete idiot. So is the UT administration if it thinks in this day and age it can discriminate against women in salaries. Mason, Moshak and Schlosser all are ASSOCIATES, not assistants, and work for all 11 women's sports. You can't compare their salary to a football trainer.

You think the athletics department is broke now, wait until they lose all these lawsuits! Worse yet, the University will lose all the experience and proven success of employees who created one of the premier sports departments in the nation and delivered eight national championships.

Hart isn't qualified to carry their lunch.

UT administration has forgotten that, like all major U.S. universities, the school has a majority of female students that fork over the money that pays their salaries. They ought to be grateful.

so your saying Hart should have taken over a broke athletic department and left it to continue to bleed money ? Next time you decide to ramble on you should at least take a moment and think about what your talking about .Try this link
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Budget

pcorange writes:

It never pays to sue your employer, if you wish to remain employed.

cdtnladyvols931#663910 writes:

It has been nothing but trouble & disaster ever since Dave Hart was hired at TN! One of the best strength and conditioning coaches and those stupid jerks fire her! What man have they got in mind for that job!!!!!! They just keep bringing TN on down.

BigBadVol writes:

in response to collegegrovebilly:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

1998 writes:

$102,000 bucks as an assistant strength coach for women's sports? Where do I sign up?

While on the subject of asinine waste, what the heck are we doing with an AD from Alabama? What about UT grads? Charles Davis comes to mind. Or don't we hire intelligent black men?

FearlessFreep writes:

Until any of the facts come out anything posted in this thread is mere speculation.

Being placed on Administrative Leave and not retained is generally because there was some kind of misconduct occurring. That is the pattern that was followed with John Trembley's dismissal. Not saying that is true in this case, but we'll let the facts come out before jumping one way or another.

cdtnladyvols931#663910 writes:

in response to laraccoon:

so your saying Hart should have taken over a broke athletic department and left it to continue to bleed money ? Next time you decide to ramble on you should at least take a moment and think about what your talking about .Try this link
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Budget

You are so right!!!!!!!

realtallshorty#241669 writes:

hartless ia a law suit collector: FSU, Bama, UTK. Good boy!

madrigal writes:

The word "retaliation" comes immediately to mind. Dave Hart's record with women's sports at other schools does not play well in this instance.

Geofffourmyle writes:

Well, that thread about "Your Cheating" Hart's positive achievements bascially came down to crickets.

Walt

UT '81

RoyMullinsfromvolquest writes:

Keep fighting the element! Long live Dave Hart!

dcrudeboy writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

$102,000 bucks as an assistant strength coach for women's sports! Nicodemus Christopher the men's basketball strength coach makes a little over $50,000! Where's the discrimination there? She should have kept her mouth shut and collected her nice salary.

Article says she was responsible for strength training over ALL 11 Lady Vol sports, so that's probably why she's getting more than just the men's BB strength coach (only looking after one sport).....

RoyMullinsfromvolquest writes:

in response to dcrudeboy:

Article says she was responsible for strength training over ALL 11 Lady Vol sports, so that's probably why she's getting more than just the men's BB strength coach (only looking after one sport).....

Most of those sports are insignificant and meaningless.

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