Clarification on Lavin's Contract

A senior UCLA administrator clarifies the changes in the buyout clause for Lavin's contract...

Head Coach Steve Lavin will have the buyout package in his contract restructured to increase his buyout amount, according to a senior UCLA administrator.

The buyout in Lavin's current contract stipulates that, if Lavin were fired, he would be owed the remaining compensation from the current season, plus approximately $150,000 for each year remaining in his contract (his contract being for six years, so it would be for each of the five remaining years). So, under the current buyout provision, if Lavin were to be fired tomorrow he'd be compensated for the remainder of his salary for this season and approximately $750,000 ($150,000 for each year remaining on the contract, which would be five). If, for instance, UCLA fired Lavin at the end of this season, UCLA would owe Lavin the approximate $750,000 ($150,000 for each year remaining on the contract).

But the new buyout clause in the contract now will compensate Lavin, if he were to be fired, for another full year of salary. For instance, if he were fired during the season, Lavin would be due his salary for the remainder of the season, and then the approximate $600,000 salary for the following season. He would also, then, be compensated the approximately $150,000 for each season remaining on the contract. With four years left on the contract, that would mean approximately another $600,000. If he were to be fired at the end of a season, in the new buyout he would receive the approximate $600,000 for the following season and then the $600,000 ($150,000 for each of the four remaining seasons on the contract), for a total of $1,200,000.

In other words, when this new buyout provision is finalized, if UCLA were to fire Lavin at the end of a season, his buyout will be increased from approximately $750,000 to $1,200,000.

This was done, according to UCLA senior administration, to bring UCLA coaching contracts in line with average college coaching job security provisions around the country.

Also, though, Lavin's buyout can be mitigated if he were to be hired as a coach by another school. If Lavin were hired as a coach by another school UCLA would only be responsible for making up the difference between the salary that school pays him and the salary UCLA would have paid him in that same year. For instance, if UCLA fired Lavin and he were then hired next year at another school for approximately $600,000 for that season, UCLA would not owe him any buyout money for that season. If the school paid Lavin $400,000, UCLA would owe him the difference of $200,000 for that season. If Lavin were then paid, for instance, over $150,000 a year or more per year for the four following seasons, UCLA would also owe Lavin nothing since it would not be less than the approximate $150,000 UCLA would owe Lavin for each of those four years.

If Lavin were fired at the end of a season and he chose not to take another coaching job for the next five years, UCLA would be responsible to pay Lavin the full $1,200,000 buyout over those five years.

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