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Volume 24 No. 156
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Boss Hog: Hunter Yuracheck Leaving Houston For Arkansas AD Job In Five-Year Deal

The Univ. of Arkansas has hired Houston AD Hunter Yurachek to the same position, signing him to a five-year contract worth $850,000 per year, including a "$200,000 signing bonus," according to Matt Jones of the ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE. Arkansas Assistant Vice Chancellor/University Relations Mark Rushing said that Yurachek's base salary of $525,000 a year will be funded by the athletic department and "no taxpayer money will be used." He added that other compensation for Yurachek will also be "paid for by the department, specifically from money raised from contracts with vendors of apparel and shoes and multimedia rights." Jones writes Yurachek, who had been at Houston since April '15, "steps into a unique situation at Arkansas, which had been conducting simultaneous searches" for an AD and football coach. He replaces Jeff Long, who was fired last month (ARKANSAS DEMOCRAT-GAZETTE, 12/5). In Houston, Joseph Duarte notes Yurachek while at UH "worked with an operating budget" around $45M. At Arkansas, Yurachek will join the lucrative SEC and "inherit an athletic department that had revenue of nearly" $125M for FY '15-16. He urachek had "four years left on a contract extension," which he signed in '16, paying $450,000 a year. Yurachek would "owe the school $350,000 were he to accept another job within the first three years of the deal," though the Razorback Foundation reportedly will cover that cost (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 12/5).

STEPPING STONE?
 In Houston, Jenny Dial Creech notes UH will "start its search for a new AD immediately." UH is in a "position it has often found itself: Steppingstone." For as "many strides as UH has taken -- from its facilities to some high-profile coaching hires -- it's still playing second fiddle to the bigger programs." Power Five schools are "able to compete for the top coaches and administrators in the country," while a school like UH "grooms talent before the big programs come along and offer higher rungs on the career ladder." Moving from a "minor conference to a major one is a natural progression." But it is a "shame for schools like UH, which constantly seems to be on the rise but stuck just outside the Power Five." Creech: "The Power Five conferences have money and resources that schools like UH simply don't" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 12/5).