New Arizona State VP/Athletics Ray Anderson on Thursday at his introductory press conference "professed a long-term commitment to his new job," according to Jeff Metcalfe of the ARIZONA REPUBLIC. Anderson, who will leave his position as NFL Exec VP/Football Operations following Super Bowl XLVIII, said, "This is not a steppingstone for me to anywhere else. This is my destination." ASU President Michael Crow said he wanted someone "with experience outside the university sector" to replace Steve Patterson, who left last year for the men's AD position at Texas. Metcalfe notes Anderson "brings his professional jobs" as a lawyer, sports agent and pro football exec, including leading the NFL's football operations department since '06. He now will be "responsible for managing" ASU’s 20 sports and $60M annual budget, and will play a "key role in construction of a new Sun Devil Stadium, plus development of an athletic district that will raise funds to pay for capital projects such as the football stadium" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 1/10). Terms of Anderson’s contract are not yet available, but the Arizona Board of Regents is "expected to formally approve Anderson’s hiring at its Feb. 6 meeting, if not before." Patterson in September received a contract extension through June '18 and a "raise to $450,000 annual base salary." Anderson "offered to put a non-compete provision in his contract preventing him from taking another college job" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 1/10). In Phoenix, Paola Boivin wrote under the header, "ASU Delivers Big With Hiring Of Anderson." Crow "didn’t need someone hungry to ascend a career ladder." He needed someone who shared his "vision of keeping student in the 'student-athlete' equation, who believes athletic success and fiscal restraint can go hand in hand." Boivin: "Nothing is a sure thing. But Anderson sounds pretty darn close" (AZCENTRAL.com, 1/9).
GREEN WITH ENVY: In Baton Rouge, Scott Kushner notes Tulane is "actively seeking applicants for a new position near the top of the department," officially titled Deputy AD & COO. A Tulane spokesperson said that the position, which will fall under the supervision of AD Rick Dickson, is "not being filled to replace anyone currently within the athletic department." It is "being added as an expansion to the athletics staff." The new position will be "responsible for assisting in the day-to-day operations, programming and administration of several internal departments, including marketing, financial management, personnel supervision, communications and contract negotiations" (Baton Rouge ADVOCATE, 1/10).
Washington State AD Bill Moos on Thursday said that he "anticipates a record deficit" that may exceed $10M for the fiscal year that ends June 30, according to Howie Stalwick of SCOUT.com. Moos expects that "increased TV revenue will help reduce the deficit" in '15 and '16 before WSU turns a profit in '17. He added that approximately $8M of the projected losses for the fiscal year will "result from bond payments" kicking in for improvements to Martin Stadium made in '12 and construction of the football operations building. The athletic department "lost a record" $6.62M in FY '12, then lost $4.47M -- the "second most in school history -- in the past fiscal year." Before "losing money the past five years," the department previously "turned a profit eight straight years." Moos noted that the school's financial support of athletics during the past fiscal year "was reduced" from $2.8M to $339,000. He added that the school "lost $250,000 on their trip" to the Gildan New Mexico Bowl. However, Moos said, "That’s a good investment for a program that hadn’t been to a bowl game in 10 years." WSU CFO Matt Kleffner said that the school "had to pay an estimated $20,000-25,000 for failing to sell all 5,000 allotted tickets." Meanwhile, Moos is "presently seeking money to build a baseball clubhouse and a new indoor football facility," and also hopes to "sell naming rights for the indoor football facility, baseball clubhouse and soccer field." Moos added that he is "not selling naming rights to Martin" (SCOUT.com, 1/9).
Each participating team in the two College Football Playoff semifinal games are "required to buy a block of 12,500 tickets to resell to its fans" before increasing to 20,000 for the title game, causing some to wonder if that is "asking too much" of the school's fans, according to Brent Schrotenboer of USA TODAY. The cost of "travel, along with scheduling issues, long have been cited as drawbacks for staging a multiple-round playoff in major college football." Those hurdles "might even stand in the way" of expanding the four-team playoff "unless additional games are staged at campus sites to mitigate travel expenses." Though the playoff games will garner "high national interest, ticket demand still could depend in large part on the size of a team's fan base and travel distance to the games." UCF and Baylor this year "struggled to sell their allotments" to the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl, and Florida State last year "only sold a small percentage of its 17,500-ticket allotment" for the Discover Orange Bowl. FSU and the ACC as a result "absorbed $2.1 million in unsold tickets." Bowl ticket requirements are "negotiated by the bowls and the leagues long before matchups are set." CFP Exec Dir Bill Hancock, who has shared his weekend plans with THE DAILY, said that he "expected the championship game's ticket allotment size for participating teams to be finalized this spring" (USA TODAY, 1/10).
DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS: The inaugural CFP National Championship will be played at AT&T Stadium, and in Dallas, Chuck Carlton writes how the Metroplex region "handles the title game will play a role in how the playoff is received." Officials from the stadium, Cowboys and Cotton Bowl game "hope to lay the groundwork for another successful title game bid in the future." Cotton Bowl officials will "initially meet monthly with the playoff group, with the first strategy session in a couple of weeks." Cotton Bowl Chair Tommy Bain said that he "expects capacity to be around 90,000, although playoff officials will have the final say." Carlton noted even when it was "not among the elite bowls, the Cotton Bowl built a reputation for hosting a well-run event." AT&T Stadium has become "a magnet for big events, including the 2014 NCAA men’s Final Four." Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy, whose team earlier this year played in the AT&T Cotton Bowl, said, "I just don’t know if there’s a better facility out there that puts on a show and is accommodating to the game. It’s very impressive" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/10).