Sunday, June 5, 2016

Razorback Foundation pays Frank Broyles $3.5 million

Posted By on Sun, Jun 5, 2016 at 8:08 AM

FARWELL: An invite to an event in June 2014 celebrating Frank Broyles 'retirement' from UA athletics. In the  fiscal year beginning the next month, the Razorback Foundation paid him $3.5 million for "speaking engagements."
  • FARWELL: An invite to an event in June 2014 celebrating Frank Broyles 'retirement' from UA athletics. In the fiscal year beginning the next month, the Razorback Foundation paid him $3.5 million for "speaking engagements."

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette picked up the latest filing from the Razorback Foundation, which supports sports at the University of Arkansas.

I track the filings, too, but the latest form is not yet available on the various services that post the tax forms of 501C3 organizations on-line.

The Foundation, famously uncommunicative though it wouldn't exist but for sports at a public university, reported taking in $11 million more in the year running from July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015, the increase thanks mostly to a gift of land in Fayetteville from Jerry Jones, the Dallas Cowboys owner, worth almost $9 million. In all, the Foundation raised more than $39 million.

The report doesn't break down how much of its revenue came from premiums on sales of better seats at football and basketball games and how much came from other contributions, apart from the land gift.

The most interesting piece of information was the required report on the top five payouts to individuals by the Foundation. Four were pay supplements to three current coaches — Bret Bielema, Mike Anderson and Dave Van Horn — and a contract buyout payment to John Pelphrey, the former basketball coach.

The leading payout, according to the D-G, was $3.5 million to Frank Broyles, the former coach and athletic director, for "speaking engagements." This was more than 10 percent of roughly $33 million in expenses of the organization during the tax year.

The previous year, Broyles was paid $415,826 by the Foundation, again for "speaking engagements."

Broyles turns 92 in December.  Broyles was honored in June 2014 for what was said to be his "final retirement" after 55 years association with University athletics. At the time, his daughter said he'd no longer be a part of the university or foundation efforts. Perhaps the most recent payment  from the Foundation — in the year following "retirement" — was a parting payment in recognition of past service.

As is customary, nobody at the Razorback Foundation responded to Democrat-Gazette questions about the tax filing.

Legislation passed in the recent special session was inspired by Broyles. It is intended to further place limits on commercial use of people's names.

UPDATE ON JUNE 17: I got a comment from Scott Varady of the Razorback Foundation relative to the Broyles payment:

Coach Frank Broyles retired from the University of Arkansas in late 2007 and was no longer a public employee. At that time, he went to work for The Razorback Foundation, Inc., an independent, non-profit corporation. For tax year 2014, the Razorback Foundation’s tax filing reflected his compensation for speaking engagements, including the completion of a long-term agreement to remain employed with the Foundation for such purposes.

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