Tennessee plans to pay departing AD Phillip Fulmer through 2023
Phillip Fulmer will be leaving his post as Tennessee Athletic Director once his successor is hired. Fulmer’s departure was announced as his retirement but the school will still be paying him for the rest of 2021 and two more years.
Wes Rucker of 247Sports shared a UT statement outlining that Fulmer will be paid monthly through the end of 2023.
“The details of AD Fulmer’s transition have not been finalized; however, we anticipate that when he leaves the athletics director position, he will receive $37,500 per month through December 31, 2023,” UT spokesperson Tyra Haag wrote in a statement.
The figure comes to $450,000 per year, half of Fulmer’s salary. In a tweet, Rucker added that the only way Tennessee would get out of paying Fulmer is to fire him for cause.
At Monday’s press conference, Fulmer cited his age as reason for stepping down, sharing it feels appropriate to let his successor hire the next head football coach.
“My thoughts are I’m 70 years old, I’m not going to be the athletic director at age 80,” Fulmer said. “It was always my expectation I would move on from athletics sooner rather than later. It only makes sense that I make that move this semester, so that a new coach with a new athletic director can implement their vision together.”
The legendary former Tennessee head football coach became the school’s athletic director on Dec. 1, 2017.
If Tennessee doesn’t have definitive “cause” legally speaking to fire Phillip Fulmer, it has to pay him.
Not much of a choice there. Contracts have consequences.
— Wes Rucker (@wesrucker247) January 20, 2021