UW Extends Athletics Director's Contract Through 2005

May 25, 2000


The University of Wyoming has extended AthleticsDirector Lee Moon's contract five years, through June 30, 2005.

At an afternoon news conference in Old Main, UW President Philip L.Dubois praised Moon's performance since arriving at UW in 1996 from MarshallUniversity.

"During my inaugural address in 1997, I said that 'I do not believethat quality academic programs and quality athletics programs are mutuallyexclusive," explained Dubois. "We have taken important steps, including theadoption last July of a dynamic Academic Plan to strengthen the university'sacademic standing. We also have taken important steps to strengthen ourintercollegiate athletics program. Over the past year we have achievedcompliance with Title IX requirements, concluded a very positive NCAArecertification process, left the Western Athletic Conference for theMountain West Conference and increased national television exposure, broughtlights to War Memorial Stadium, and begun construction of the RochelleAthletics Center.

"We also have achieved renewed respectability in our most visible revenuesports, in part through the hiring of dedicated coaches such as Vic Koenningand Steve McClain who, in addition to rejuvenating interest in Cowboyathletics, have served as outstanding ambassadors for this institution,"Dubois continued. "Today, UW has a team within the intercollegiateathletics department that is becoming the envy of other universities withnational aspirations. It just makes good sense to keep the team together,and that team includes Lee Moon."

In addition to extending Moon's contract Dubois increased Moon's base salaryof $114,996 by $19,008 to $134,004. The increase will be funded equallythrough state appropriated (Section I) and self-generated (Section II)funds. The Section I increase of 8.3 percent is in line with the average8.2 percent pay increase allocated for staff, faculty and administrators forFY 2001.

Moon also will receive an increase in his annual housing allowancefrom $12,000 to $32,004. The augmentation of Moon's housing allowance alsowill be funded through athletics department self-generated revenues.

Additional non-cash compensation (e.g., clothing from athleticssponsor Reebok, courtesy cars, etc.), already a part of Moon's compensation,is valued at $18,700.

The total package for Moon is estimated at approximately $184,708.

As is the case with UW coaches, Moon's contract also includesincentives coupled to graduation rates for scholar-athletes as well asselection for post-season football bowl games and NCAA or NIT tournamentappearances by the men's and women's basketball teams.

According to NCAA statistics from Nov. 1998, the average base salaryfor athletics directors in major conferences ranged from $151,130-$172,507,with an average total package ranging from $176,780-$209,045. The highestpaid athletics directors earned, in total compensation, from $228K-$302K."I'm very proud that the president and the university think enough of me toput this together," Moon said. "To have the support of your president,especially a man like Phil, means a great deal to an athletics director. Ibelieve we have been able to accomplish many things here, and the futureappears very bright. I am happy to be a part of that future."I love being at Wyoming," Moon continued. "This extension gives me evenmore reason to continue the job we began four years ago. That job is notdone. We still have goals we want to reach, and we will work very hard toaccomplish them as soon as possible."

A native of Roanoke, Va., Moon played football for the VirginiaMilitary Institute and on the semi-pro level with the Roanoke Buckskins. Hebegan his coaching career at Virginia's Staunton Military Academy and was agraduate assistant at the University of Virginia, where he earned a master'sdegree in education.

Moon held increasingly responsible positions in the athleticsdepartments at Duke, Virginia, Mississippi State and Kansas State beforebeing named director of athletics at Marshall in 1988. During Moon's eightyears at Marshall, the school appeared in five consecutive NCAA DivisionI-AA football playoffs and in four played to the championship game.Marshall won the I-AA national championship in 1992.He has participated in the National Association of Collegiate Directors ofAthletics Management Institute, chaired the Southern Conference Director ofAthletics Committee and the conference Men's Basketball Committee, as wellas serving on the NCAA-IAA Football Advisory Committee. In 1992-93, Moonwas awarded the Commissioner's Award for Outstanding Leadership and Serviceto the Southern Conference. Moon is a member of the NCAA Football IssuesCommittee through 2002 and the Division IA Athletics Directors' AssociationExecutive Committee.

Lee Moon's Accomplishments Since July 1, 1996

* Involved in the formation of the Mountain West Conference

* Involved in negotiating the Mountain West Conference multi-milliondollar, seven-year television contract with ESPN.

* ESPN and regional television packages have helped increased exposurefor UW and Cowboy football from 4 games in 1995 to an expected 10 games in2000-2001. Televised basketball games have increased from 4 in 1995 to 11in 1999-2000.

* Negotiated the SportsWest television contract. Funds from thatcontract helped install lights in War Memorial Stadium at a cost of $460,000

* Brought the Wyoming Radio Network in house and created the CowboySports Network

* Provided athletic department leadership for the fund-raisingcampaign for the new $9.5 million Rochelle Athletics Center

* The Cowboy Joe Club reached the million-dollar fund-raising plateaufor the first time in school history during 1997-98

* Negotiated a $2.35 million contract with University of Tennessee toplay a Wyoming "home" game in Nashville, the largest such contract ever

* Since arriving at Wyoming he instituted the summer Sports Festivalprogram which takes UW coaches and student-athletes into the state.Festival participation has averaged 3,400 young people each summer

* The UW athletics department received certification that it was inTitle IX compliance from the U.S. Department of Education

* Has upgraded budgets and expanded coaching staffs for women'ssports, especially basketball, volleyball and soccer

* Has upgraded Wyoming's football and basketball schedules to includesuch opponents as Ohio State, Georgia, Auburn, Texas A&M and Tennessee infootball, and Indiana, Arizona, South Carolina and LSU in basketball.Instrumental in Wyoming's appearance in the inaugural Black Coaches'Association Eddie Robinson Classic football game vs. Ohio State

* Wyoming put together four straight football seasons of at leastseven victories for the first time in school history during his tenure

* Wyoming led the nation in GTE Academic first team All-Americans inboth 1996 (2) and 1997 (3) in football. Two of those players - Cory Wedeland Jay Korth - earned NCAA post-graduate scholarships

* Home attendance at UW basketball games increased by 32 percent fromthe 1996-97 season (Moon's first) to the 1997-98 season (Moon's second)

* Moon is a member of the NCAA Football Issues Committee through 2002and the Division IA Athletics Directors' Association Executive Committee

* In 1999 he won the All-American Football Foundation General RobertR. Neyland Athletic Director Achievement Award

* He has been a member of a number of Mountain West Conferenceleadership committees