Archive for Sunday, October 3, 2004

1 in 3 get free car in KU athletic dept.

Dealers, athletic corporation exchange vehicle use for tickets, other privileges

October 3, 2004


Because he's Kansas University' athletic director, Lew Perkins gets two cars. His contract says so.

Men's basketball coach Bill Self also gets two cars. So does football coach Mark Mangino.

They're hardly alone. Records show that 59 of the athletic department's 180 full-time employees get cars -- that's one of every three.

Forty coaches, assistant coaches and trainers get cars, as do 22 department employees in administrative positions.

"If you want good people, you have to pay them," said Jim Marchiony, KU associate athletic director in charge of external affairs. "This is one way we can accomplish that."

It doesn't cost much, either. Every year, car dealers in Lawrence, Ottawa, Shawnee Mission and as far away as Hutchinson, Salina and Dodge City, loan cars to the athletic department.

For each car, the dealers get:

  • Two free football season tickets with the option of buying two more.
  • Crown Chevrolet owner Miles Schnaer supplies some of the cars to
the Kansas University Athletic Corp. Schnaer is pictured on Friday
with his collection of signed KU basketballs, footballs and

    Crown Chevrolet owner Miles Schnaer supplies some of the cars to the Kansas University Athletic Corp. Schnaer is pictured on Friday with his collection of signed KU basketballs, footballs and baseballs.

  • The option to buy two men's basketball tickets.
  • Credit for a $5,000 contribution to the Williams Fund, the fund-raising arm of the athletic department.
  • Inclusion in a full-page "Wheel Club" advertisement in football and basketball game-day programs.

Cars are returned

The cars are returned to the dealers, usually within one or two years.

"It depends on the vehicle," said Miles Schnaer, president of Crown Chevrolet-Oldsmobile-Toyota in Lawrence. "For some, it may be after 5,000 miles. For others, it may be 20,000 miles."

The Kansas University Athletic Corp. Wheel Club includes administrators and coaches. Some of those receiving use of a car:
Staff member Position Vehicle
Lew Perkins Athletic director 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Ray Bechard Volleyball 2003 Toyota Highlander
Tracy Bunge Softball 2005 Pontiac Aztek
Clark Campbell Swimming 2003 Saturn Ion
Rob Catloth Rowing 2003 Ford Windstar
Mark Francis Soccer 2004 Honda Odyssey
Amy Hall-Holt Tennis 2003 PT Cruiser
Bonnie Henrickson W. basketball 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Mark Mangino Football 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Erin O'Neil Women's golf 2004 Chevy Trailblazer
Ritch Price Baseball 2003 Oldsmobile Bravada
Ross Randall Men's golf 2005 Buick Century
Stanley Redwine Cross country, track 2004 Oldsmobile Bravada
Bill Self Men's basketball 2004 Lincoln Aviator

Crown is a more-than-willing participant in the loan program, Schnaer said.

"I believe that when you're in business, you have an obligation to be active in your community and to support your community," he said. "And in Lawrence, that means supporting the University of Kansas, which happens to be a major employer.

"Yes, it's good for business -- you get to meet a lot of people, who, at some point may be customers. But, still, it's the right thing to do."

It doesn't hurt that Schnaer, who played basketball in high school and at Labette County Community College, is an avid sports fan who enjoys interacting with athletes and coaches.

"Over the years, I've learned that being successful in sales is a lot like being a successful athlete," he said. "You have to work at it. You have to prepare yourself. You have be ready to take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves."

Crown also is active in booster organizations for the Kansas City Chiefs and Royals. It has been a member of the athletic department's Wheel Club for 10 years.

Perkins decides perks

At the athletic department, there's not a clear standard for deciding who gets a car and who doesn't. Those decisions, Marchiony said, are made by Perkins.

"Unfortunately, there has to be a cutoff point," said Marchiony, who has been provided with a 2003 Cadillac Seville. "It's never easy."

Generally, head coaches get at least one car. Self and Mangino get two.

Football and basketball assistant coaches all get cars. Their counterparts on the baseball, volleyball, track, cross country, swimming, soccer, tennis and rowing teams do not.

Each of the department's nine associate and four assistant athletic directors get cars, as do:

  • Charlotte Stuart, director of ticket operations.
  • Mike Lickert, director of video services.
  • JoAnn Zerr, director of business operations.
  • Diane Douglas, director of human relations.
  • Susan Wachter, chief financial officer.

Those who get cars are responsible for routine maintenance and gasoline.

In addition to a 2004 Lincoln Navigator provided under the terms of his employment contract, Kansas University athletic director Lew Perkins also is driving around a 2004 Mercedes-Benz S430V4.The car is a loaner from Schofield Auto Plaza in Wichita, according to athletic department records.Jim Marchiony, KU associate athletic director in charge of external affairs, said Perkins was trying out the car from a dealership he was acquainted with from his days at Wichita State University.Under Perkins' contract, KU provides him with two cars. His wife, Gwen, drives a 2003 Lexus LS 430. Should Perkins elect to keep the Mercedes, Marchiony said, he would have to purchase it himself or give up one of the other cars.

The cars are considered a form of income and are subject to taxation.

"The annual lease value is put on your W-2. You pay taxes on it," Marchiony said. "It's a perk, but it's not free."

The athletic department pays for the tags and insurance.

Nothing unusual

The arrangements are not unique. Of the 131 full-time employees in Kansas State University's athletic department, 56 get cars.

At Wichita State University, 23 of the athletic department's 77 full-time employees get cars.

"This is a fairly standard practice for institutions to engage in," said NCAA spokesman Erik Christianson. "It's appropriate, it's legitimate and it provides an important benefit to the university."

Not all universities offer their car dealers the same benefit package. At K-State, for example, dealers receive four football season tickets, four basketball season tickets -- men's and/or women's -- and credit for a $6,000 contribution to the department's Ahearn Scholarship Fund for each car.

At Wichita State, dealers receive eight men's basketball season tickets, four baseball season tickets and credit for a $3,000 contribution to the Shocker Athletic Scholarship Organization.

Outside the athletic department, KU provides:

  • Chancellor Robert Hemenway with a 2005 Chrysler 300 Limited.
  • Provost David Shulenburger with a 2002 Chrysler Concord.

Janet Murguia, former executive vice chancellor for external affairs, was provided with a 2004 Ford Escape SUV. Her successor, Paul Carttar, who starts Monday, has not decided whether to accept the vehicle or use his own.

The cars for the KU administrators outside of the athletic department are not on loan. Instead, they are purchased on the university's behalf by the KU Endowment Association.

Cars for professors?

According to Lynn Bretz, director of university relations, no one has proposed soliciting car dealers for cars for distinguished professors or college deans.

"The chancellor, the provost and the EVC (executive vice chancellor) get cars because they travel a lot. It's actually cheaper than paying 36 cents a mile," Bretz said. "I don't how that standard would be met in terms of, say, a top professor."

At least one professor wasn't upset by the disparity between the university at large and the athletic department.

"Oh, I don't see a problem with it," said Ray Davis, a public administration professor and a former president of the faculty Senate Executive Committee. "There are much more serious issues to be concerned about."

Davis said he and others were far more worried by recent reports that 11 of the nation's top-ranked football programs, including K-State's, allow players to earn academic credit for attending practice.

"That's a travesty," Davis said. "That's a perfect example of how the system has been perverted. I certainly hope that's not being done here."

"It's not," Marchiony said.

Staff member Position Vehicle
Trena Anderson Women's baskeball asst. coach 2004 Nissan Murano
Ray Bechard Volleyball head coach 2003 Toyota Highlander
Brandon Blaney Football asst. coach 2004 Pontiac GrandAm
Clint Bowen Football asst. coach 2004 Chevy Blazer
Tracy Bunge Softball head coach 2005 Pontiac Aztek
Paul Buskirk Assoc. athletics director 2004 Honda Accord
Clark Campbell Swimming head coach 2003 Saturn Ion
Rob Catloth Rowing head coach 2003 Ford Windstar
Earnest Collins Football asst. coach 2004 Dodge Stratus
Billy Cowgill Trainer 2003 Ford Taurus
Chris Dawson Football strength coach 2003 Ford Taurus
Tyrone Dixon Football asst. coach 2003 Ford Explorer
Dave Doeren Football asst. coach 2004 Chevy Trailblazer
Joe Dooley Men's basketball asst. coach 2004 Nissan X-Terra
Diane Douglas Dir. of human relations 2003 Ford Taurus
Kyra Elzy Women's basketball asst. coach 2004 GMC Yukon
Mark Francis Soccer head coach 2004 Honda Odyssey
John Hadl Assoc. athletics director 2003 Ford Expedition
Amy Hall-Holt Tennis head coach 2003 PT Cruiser
Pat Henderson Football asst. coach 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
Bonnie Henrickson Women's basketball head coach 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Jeff Himes Football administrative asst. 2000 Ford F-150 Truck
Terry Hines Assoc. athletics director 2004 Nissan Xterra
Rajeeb Hossain Football administrative asst. 2000 Chevy Impala
Andrea Hudy Assoc. director for conditioning 2004 Ford Explorer
Tim Jankovich Men's basketball asst. coach 2000 BMW
Carol Jarosky Football head trainer 2003 Saturn Ion
Rodney Jones Asst. athletics director 2004 Ford Expedition
Larry Keating Senior assoc. athletics director 2004 Lincoln LS
Gary Kempf Asst. athletics director 2003 Saturn Vue
Ben Kirtland Assoc. athletics director 2004 Chevrolet Trailblazer
Karen Lange Marketing coordinator 2003 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Sean Lester Assoc. athletics director 2004 Ford Explorer
Mike Lickert Dir. of video services 2003 Chevy Trailblazer
Brandon MacNeill Assoc. athletics director 2004 Volvo X-C 70
Larry Magee Head team physician 2002 Chevy Silverado
Mark Mangino Football head coach 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Mary Jane Mangino Wife of football head coach 2003 Ford Mustang
Danny Manning Men's basketball assistant 2004 Chevrolet Suburban
Jim Marchiony Assoc. athletics director 2003 Cadillac Seville
George Matsakis Football asst. coach 2002 Dodge Intrepid
Kelly Mehrtens Assoc. athletics director 2002 Mercury Mountaineer
Brad Nachtigal Asst. athletics director 2004 GMC Envoy
Katie O'Connor Women's basketball asst. coach 2002 Toyota Highlander
Erin O'Neil Women's golf head coach 2004 Chevy Trailblazer
Lew Perkins Athletics director 2004 Lincoln Navigator
Gwen Perkins Wife of athletics director 2003 Lexus LS 430
Ritch Price Baseball head coach 2003 Oldsmobile Bravada
Nick Quartaro Football asst. coach 2004 Buick LeSabre
Glenn Quick Dir. of degree, career counseling 2004 Honda Accord
Ross Randall Men's golf head coach 2005 Buick Century
Stanley Redwine Cross country, track head coach 2004 Oldsmobile Bravada
Bill Self Men's basketball head coach 2004 Lincoln Aviator
Cynthia Self Wife of men's basketball head coach 2003 Mercury Mountaineer
Andrew Steinberg Asst. athletics director 2003 Nissan Altima
Charlotte Stuart Dir. of ticket operations 2004 Pontiac Grand Am
Chris Theisen Asst. athletics director 2005 Saturn Vue
Kurtis Townsend Men's basketball asst. coach 2004 Mercury Mountaineer
Susan Wachter Chief financial officer 2004 Ford Taurus
Ed Warinner Football asst. coach 2004 Chevy Trailblazer
Bill Young Football asst. coach 2002 Toyota Sequoia
JoAnn Zerr Dir. of business operations 2002 Volkswagen Golf

Commenting has been disabled for this item.