Photos by Shelly Hanks, WSU Photo Services
By Hope Belli Tinney, WSU Today
PULLMAN – Coaches and athletes working and playing at WSU deserve the best, and that’s what they’ll be getting when the university’s new athletics director comes on board this spring, said WSU President Elson S. Floyd at a Wednesday afternoon press conference.
Floyd announced that William H. (Bill) Moos had agreed in principle to an employment contract that would pay him a salary of $455,000 annually, including additional incentives or bonuses related to factors including postseason play, student academic performance, and fundraising goals.
“It’s reasonable, it’s fair and it’s appropriate,” Floyd said. “The guy sitting next to me represents the best of his class.”
Moos’ salary would make him the third highest paid AD in the PAC-10, Floyd said, adding that the average guaranteed salary in the PAC-10 is $400,000. The AD’s salary is funded entirely from athletic event ticket sales and private donations; no state dollars or tuition funds will be used to fund this position.
For his part, Moos said the last week and a half has been a whirlwind, but that he was thrilled with the opportunity to return to WSU and equally pleased that he and President Floyd seem to see things similarly.
“I love the way he thinks,” Moos said. “He thinks like methat anything can be done with hard work and good management.”
A WSU Alumni Achievement Award recipient, Moos co-captained the 1972 Cougar football team and worked on the WSU athletics staff for eight years in the 1980s and was named a WSU Distinguished Alumnus. Moos was AD at the University of Montana for five years and at the University of Oregon for 12. During his tenure at Oregon, the university moved from underdog status to a consistent force to be reckoned with, he said, and WSU can do the same.
“I will never look at a program I am responsible for as an underdog,” Moos said.
Moos said his top priorities would be his coaches and student athletes. “So many things are not broken,” he said, that his first months on the job would be spent listening and observing and asking a lot of questions.
According to the agreement, Moos will start at WSU no later than May 1, but could begin sooner. Anne McCoy, WSU senior associate athletics director/senior woman administrator, will continue on as interim AD until Moos employment becomes official. McCoy was named to the position last week following the announced departure of former athletics director Jim Sterk. Sterk, who had been at WSU since 2000, has become the new athletics director at San Diego State University. Sterk was making about $300,000 when he left WSU. His new contract at San Diego has not been finalized.
During the 2 p.m. press conference Moos made it clear he’s ready to go, but said he is still “tying up loose ends.” Moos, who was AD at the University of Oregon from 1995 to 2007, agreed to a noncompete clause following his departure there that reportedly guaranteed him $200,000 per year until 2017 if he did not work as an athletics director at a BCS school west of the Mississippi.
When asked how the situation at Oregon could affect his work at WSU, Moos replied that the two matters are entirely separate and are being handled as such. “I work for Elson Floyd and Washington State University 100 percent,” he said.
Moos attended the press conference with his wife, Kendra, and a support network of children, grandchildren and a nephew. Moos and his wife have five children: Christa, Brittany, Bo, Kati and Benjamin, ranging in age from 30 to 11 years old.
(To see a video of the press conference, go to experience.wsu.edu, and click on the appropriate link dated Feb. 24, 2010.)