Incoming University of Tennessee athletics director John Currie stands to make $900,000 in his first year along with a signing bonus, an allotment for expenses and a $1.5 million retention bonus if he stays at UT through 2022, documents show.
10News on Friday secured a copy of the "Memorandum of Understanding" detailing Currie's employment terms as AD and vice chancellor.
Most recently the athletics director at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kan., Currie is set to start as athletics director at UT on April 1. He met with the public and reporters on Thursday on the UT campus.
Currie and new UT Chancellor Beverly Davenport, who picked Currie for the job, signed the document Tuesday. A committee that included former UT great Peyton Manning screened candidates.
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The former executive associate athletics director at UT is to be paid $300,000 a year as his base pay. He'll also get $600,000 annually to cover TV, radio and other appearances that go along with the job, according to the memo.
He's getting a $75,000 signing bonus, the document shows.
The document is effective through June 30, 2022. If he's still in the job at the end of that time, he's in line for a $1.5 million retention bonus.
Currie's base pay would increase by $25,000 a year starting July 2018.
Other terms of the agreement include a moving allowance of $35,000 and compensation of up to $5,000 a month to cover temporary housing and living expenses. Currie will get that compensation through June 2018 unless he sells his home in Kansas first.
Fringe benefits include $40,000 a year for work-related expenses and $1,700 monthly for a vehicle allowance.
In addition, the MOU lists specific pay incentives he can get depending on how well student-athletes do based on the NCAA Graduation Success Rate and UT's showing in the Director's Cup standings.
For example, Currie would get $100,000 if all intercollegiate student-athletes post an overall GSR of 89 percent to 91.9 percent.
In April 2016, The Kansas City Star reported that Currie's salary at K-State was $775,000. He was in line to receive a $100,000 bonus this June.
UT reserves the right to fire Currie for cause or to terminate him without cause for a specified amount of damages.
Currie also has discretion to end his time with UT but must pay damages that depend on when he leaves the university.
Lastly, the understanding states: "Currie represents that he has disclosed to the University all material information concerning previous NCAA, conference, or institutional rules violations or potential violations committed by him or any coach or staff member under his direct or indirect control at any other NCAA member institution prior to the date on which he has executed this agreement..."
He joined the UT staff in 1997, then left to work at his alma mater, Wake Forest University. He returned in 2000 to UT and stayed nearly a decade, departing in 2009 for the K-State job as executive associate athletics director for UT under AD Mike Hamilton.
Before he left UT for the job in Kansas, Currie helped lead the search in 2007 for a new baseball coach - Todd Raleigh - along with the 2008 search for a head football coach. Lane Kiffin got that job.
Currie replaces Dave Hart, who announced in August he was retiring effective June 30, 2017.
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