By Phillip Whitten
August 29. THE depth of the cynicism and hypocrisy of the University of Nebraska administration became even more apparent than previously today, when USA Today reported the school "paid a record $1,027,176 in bonuses, honorariums and country club memberships to athletic department employees in the 2000-2001 fiscal year."
Other details in this report were gathered from sources at the University of Nebraska.
In April, Bill Byrne, the school's Athletic Director, announced he was cutting the men's swim team — the budget for which was about $400,000 — ostensibly due to budgetary reasons.
Gosh, the budget was so tight Byrne only awarded himself a bonus of $129,795. Throw in a $60,000 endowed chair and another $63,030 bonus from the Athletic Department and Byrne's base salary of $152,475 balloons to $402,270. Plus perks, of course.
Football coach Frank Solich received a bonus of $200,000, a $25,000 endowed chair, $3,690 in country club memberships and $22,500 for guiding his team to the Alamo Bowl.
Men's basketball coach Barry Collier netted a nice little bonus of $153,075 plus a $50,000 endowment.
Women's volleyball coach John Cook took home a $50,000 bonus and $2,930 in country club memberships for winning an NCAA title.
Baseball coach Dave Van Horn pocketed a tidy $23,750 to reward him for taking the Huskers to the College World Series.
Associate AD Gary Fouraker will have to make do with only $10,975 in bonuses and club memberships.
Bowling coach Bill Straub knocked down a $9,578 bonus for the year.
Swimming World and Swiminfo are currently conducting a much more extensive study of the finances of Nebraska's Athletic Department, and will have detailed information available shortly.