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AD search will cost USF more than $100,000



USF has signed an agreement with a Texas-based executive recruiting firm to assist with its search for a new athletic director.

The firm's president is an acquaintance of a potential AD candidate favored by a huge segment of the Bulls fan base.

Upon a public-records request Friday from the Tampa Bay Times, the university presented a signed agreement between President Judy Genshaft and Eastman & Beaudine, Inc., a search firm roughly a half-century old with a sprawling sports clientele. 

According to the agreement, Eastman & Beaudine will charge USF a "reduced" rate of $100,000 for the search. The initial retainer is $33,333.33.

It states the normal fee charged by the firm to universities and other non-profits is 25 percent of the hired executive's first-year compensation (base plus bonus). Out-of-pocket and travel expenses aren't included in the fee.

According to the agreement, Genshaft and Eastman & Beaudine president Bob Beaudine
"conservatively estimated" the Bulls AD job will pay $500,000 annually.

Based in Plano, Texas, Eastman & Beaudine's clientele has included Major League Baseball and some of its clubs, as well as the PGA Tour.

According to its website, it has facilitated the "placement" of several prominent Division I coaches with their current programs, including Hugh Freeze (football, Ole Miss), Steve Alford (basketball, UCLA) and Art Briles (football, Baylor).

Beaudine, who recently spoke at a USF-hosted lecture series at the Tampa Bay Times Forum, appears to be a friend and business associate of Rob Higgins, the overwhelming local favorite to replace retiring AD Doug Woolard.

A USF alumnus, Higgins currently heads the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. On the day Beaudine was scheduled to speak at the Forum, Higgins issued this tweet: Look forward to seeing my friend @YouGotWho & hearing him speak again. @YouGotWho is Beaudine's Twitter handle.

Higgins has declined to comment on the AD vacancy at his alma mater.

Former Lynn University athletic director John McCarthy, now a college athletics deparment consultant, said a six-figure fee for such a search is standard for Division I programs making a major hire.

"If you're hiring a football coach at Alabama or Texas or one of the major ones, yeah, you're looking at a six-figure deal," McCarthy said. "It depends on the position, it depends on the level; there are some factors involved."

[Last modified: Friday, January 24, 2014 9:00pm]


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