Jim Tressel set to earn $300K as Youngstown State University president

May 11, 2014
Former OSU football coach Jim Tressel was named the next president of Youngstown State University.  Credit: Lantern file photo

Former OSU football coach Jim Tressel was named the next president of Youngstown State University.
Credit: Lantern file photo

Jim Tressel and the Youngstown State University Board of Trustees signed a letter of understanding Monday to lay out the key terms of an upcoming contract that will make Tressel the university’s next president, effective July 1.

The letter states Tressel is set to earn an annual salary of $300,000 for the first two years of a three-year agreement running through June 30, 2017. Tressel’s third-year salary is set to be determined based on a performance review, according to a Youngstown State release.

Tressel said Wednesday he’s enthusiastic about becoming Youngstown State president.

“We are so excited to have this opportunity to serve the students and faculty at Youngstown State. We look forward to a wonderful partnership with (next OSU president) Dr. (Michael) Drake, the Ohio State University and all the public universities in the great state of Ohio!! It is an honor and a privilege to serve young people through higher education,” Tressel said in an email.

Tressel is currently the vice president for student success at the University of Akron and a former Ohio State football coach.

As coach at OSU from 2001-2011, Tressel compiled a 106-22 record and led the Buckeyes to a national championship in his second season at the school. He resigned in May 2011 after an improper benefits scandal, dubbed the Tattoo-Gate scandal.

The NCAA suspended five OSU players for the first five games of the 2011 season for selling memorabilia and receiving improper benefits from a tattoo parlor and its owner. Another player received a one-game ban.

Nearly three years later, Tressel was unanimously selected as Youngstown State’s ninth president by its Board Friday.

Tressel’s selection comes after former Youngstown State President Randy Dunn resigned in March after seven months in the position to assume the presidency of Southern Illinois University.

While a full employment contract is set to be negotiated and approved at a later date, according to the release, the term sheet states Youngstown State will provide Tressel housing and cost of relocation and supply him with an “American-made vehicle.”

It also outlines that if Tressel terminates the contract within certain periods of time, he would owe Youngstown State various amounts – within a year, he would owe Youngstown State $200,000; within two years, the amount would fall to $175,000; and within three years, Tressel would owe $150,000, according to the release.

Assuming the presidency will be Tressel’s second time being employed at Youngstown State – he served as its football coach for 15 seasons from 1986 to 2000.

Youngstown State Board Chair Sudershan Garg said Monday Youngstown State is excited for Tressel to become president.

“We look forward to Mr. Tressel’s return to Youngstown and to his leadership at YSU for many years to come,” Garg said in a released statement.

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