Kansas Athletics Inc. has recovered nearly $340,000 in losses from a tickets scandal that cost the department at least $2 million.
Among the sources of money is a $250,000 payment received by the department in March from CNA, the insurance company that carried a policy protecting the department against property damage and theft.
The department had filed its claim in October, citing Kansas University’s internal investigation that indicated employees had stolen at least 17,000 tickets for men’s basketball, and at least 2,000 tickets for football, over a five-year period and then had sold and otherwise distributed them for personal gain, costing the department at least $1 million.
A month later, a federal grand jury indicted five former department employees for conspiracy to commit wire fraud in the scam, which authorities determined had cost the department at least $2 million.
The $250,000 claim was the maximum allowed under Kansas Athletics’ insurance policy and came after another large claim for property damage that had been incurred during an earlier microburst, said Jim Marchiony, an associate athletic director. Both losses were covered under the same policy.
“Fortunately we had the policy when the microburst hit, and then we again were fortunate to have it because of the theft situation,” Marchiony said. “Neither incident is something that you expect to happen, but that’s why you have insurance.”
Given the two large claims during a five-year period, Marchiony said, CNA chose not to renew its policy with Kansas Athletics. Now the department is insured with Chartis for $250,000 in coverage.
The department also has received $64,500 from Ben Kirtland, former associate athletic director for development. He awaits sentencing Thursday in Wichita.
The balance of the funds received so far — nearly $25,500 — has come in through garnishments of wages from Brandon Simmons and Jason Jeffries, the first two former employees to plead guilty in the case. Each is paying restitution while on probation for their felony convictions on misprision, which is failing to notify authorities about a crime that is being committed.