Article on JJ leaving UH for SMU

HA Note: “Jones’ contract had been allowed to lapse into its final year, even though Jones had offered to sign a new, unique five-year deal in March 2006 for less than his current annual salary of $800,016. Instead, athletic director Herman Frazier rejected Jones’ proposal and the two would not discuss a contract proposal until two days after the 2008 Sugar Bowl.”

About JJ’s contract running out at UH and Herman Frazier rejecting JJ’s offer to take a pay *cut*, former UH tight end (and prominent Hawaii business man) Kent Untermann said:
“Any athletic director in his right mind would have had June under contract at this time last year, for recruiting purposes, if nothing else. This is inexcusable.” (HA)

HA Note: “With SMU offering a five-year deal worth between $1.85 million to $2 million, UH launched an 11th-hour charge, offering Jones $1.1 million, then $1.3 million, then $1.3 million with a $1 million annuity that would boost his per-year average to $1.5 million. Jones, already in Dallas for face-to-face interviews, turned off his cell phones, kneeled in prayer in his hotel room and slept on it. Five hours later, his mind was clear and decision made.”

About choosing SMU over UH’s last-minute offer, JJ said:
“I had peace about coming here (to Dallas).” (HA)

HA Note: “So ended the tenure of the winningest coach in UH history. Jones’ nine-year record at UH was 76-41, including six bowl appearances.”

About why it was important for him to leave UH for the changes needed to get implemented, JJ said:
“It was time to go. My gut feeling was I didn’t think the university would pull the trigger on the things that needed to change, to keep going, unless I left. I think it’s great the university has FieldTurf now and they’ve accomplished a lot of things. I’m not convinced those things would have happened if I stayed. My leaving brought attention, just like when we got a grass field when vonAppen left. They have more recruiting money. They have new offices. I was there nine years and nothing ever changed. I wasn’t convinced those things would have happened.” (HA)


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