Dutcher Gets Job Security in SDSU Contract

San Diego State officials have used words like trust and continuity to describe the relationship with new men’s basketball coach Brian Dutcher, and those concepts are embodied in his contract that was recently finalized.

Dutcher and the Aztecs look like they’ll be together for a while, given the buyout clauses on both sides.

The five-year, $4 million contract is fully guaranteed, meaning the university would owe Dutcher however many years are remaining should, as Athletic Director John David Wicker put it, “something were to go haywire, which obviously we don’t think will happen.” Conversely, if Dutcher wins big and draws an offer from a big-money school in a power conference, the buyout is $2.56 million in his first two seasons, $1.76 million in his third and just under $1 million in his fourth.

The separation numbers are considerably higher than in the contracts of the man Dutcher replaced (Steve Fisher’s largest buyout by another school was $750,000), but the concession for security is 25 percent less salary.

Dutcher will make $755,242 in base and supplemental compensation in his first season, not including benefits and bonuses, and receive a $50,000 annual raise after that. Fisher made $1,026,000 in his final season. SDSU football coach Rocky Long is at $826,304 per year.

“I’m excited to have the contract done,” Wicker said, “and I’m excited that Brian Dutcher, who has been on the sideline for so long and has been a part of so many victories and has been such a big part of building this program, is going to be our head coach for the next five years and then some.

“It made sense to lock him up as best we could. I’ve said all along that continuity and consistency in our coaching staffs are part of the reason we’ve been this successful.”

Dutcher becomes the Mountain West’s third highest-paid basketball coach, behind Nevada’s Eric Musselman and Colorado State’s Larry Eustachy, who both make about $1 million per year. Next on the list after Dutcher are UNLV’s Marvin Menzies ($700,000) and Boise State’s Leon Rice ($675,000). Craig Neal made $950,000 at New Mexico before being fired last spring, but the contract for successor Paul Weir pays him $625,000 in 2017-18.

SDSU will spend about $250,000 per year less on its men’s head basketball coach, but Wicker said some of that has been “reinvested in assistant coaches” and will go towards Fisher’s part-time salary as a university community relations ambassador (which has yet to be finalized). “There is,” Wicker noted, “some savings overall.”

Dutcher was unavailable for comment.

Other notable items in the 10-page contract:

  • It includes far more potential bonuses ($230,000) than Fisher’s contracts ($60,000), but the biggest ticket items would require a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. Dutcher gets $20,000 for making the tournament, $10,000 for each win, $50,000 for reaching the Final Four and $75,000 for reaching the final.
  • Other bonuses: $20,000 for winning the Mountain West regular-season or tournament; $10,000 for winning 20 games; $10,000 for Mountain West coach of the year; $10,000 for national coach of the year; $5,000 for an NIT appearance; $10,000 for the NIT semifinals; $20,000 for the NIT final.
  • There are also two lucrative academic bonuses: $10,000 for a cumulative team grade-point average above 2.80 and $25,000 above 2.90; and $10,000 for a four-year Academic Progress Rate average above 950 and $25,000 above 969. SDSU’s four-year APR for men’s basketball this year was 980. However, if the team’s APR dips below 930, the entire bonus package is negated.
  • The use of two courtesy vehicles or a monthly car allowance of $341.67.
  • The university will pay up to $25,000 per year for facility rental at basketball camps, which allows Dutcher, the contract says, to “realize additional income.” (For a time, SDSU paid all rental charges for Fisher’s camps.)
  • The wording for Mountain West bonuses includes this interesting parenthetical: “or successor of substitute conference.”
  • There are 12 items that the “employee is responsible for complying with.” No. 8 says: “Ensure that public statements remain complimentary regarding the athletics program and the university.”

Wooden Legacy venue change

The final day of the Wooden Legacy tournament over Thanksgiving will be played at Cal State Fullerton’s Titan Gym instead of Anaheim’s Honda Center. In recent years, the first two rounds were at 4,000-seat Titan Gym on Thanksgiving and Friday, and Sunday’s final and other third-round games at the 18,336-seat Honda Center.

That could put a premium on tickets if the Aztecs, which have a strong Orange County following based on previous games in the area, make the final of the eight-team tournament that also includes Saint Mary’s, Georgia, Harvard, Washington State, DePaul, Saint Joseph’s and host Cal State Fullerton.

Original Source: http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sports/aztecs/sd-sp-azhoops-20170628-story,amp.html