UCF Vice President and Director of Athletics Danny White shot down speculation in an article from a University of Kansas blog that he met with KU about its open athletic director position on Friday:
Unfortunately, I am compelled to comment on another institution’s search. Disappointed that @SBNation stated that I met with another school about their AD position. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. There’s no reason for me to do that. UCF is the best AD job in America!— Danny White (@UCFDannyWhite) June 29, 2018
The article by Mike Plank of Rock Chalk Talk states the following:
I am told that KU has met with UCF AD Danny White. Other candidates include: Travis Goff, Northwestern Assistant AD; Kenny Mossman, Oklahoma Assistant AD; Jeff Long, former Arkansas AD; Terry Mohajir, Arkansas State AD; Josh Rebholz, UCLA Assistant AD.
White signed a contract extension with UCF last August for five years at $525,000 per year, automatically renewing at a 5% raise each year plus incentives. The contract was further amended in November with a bump in pay to $600,000, according to Iliana Limon-Romero of the Orlando Sentinel.
Perhaps more importantly, White's buyout was increased to two-years' salary, or around $1.2 million.
Brandon Helwig of UCFSports.com reported last month that White's contract was about to be further amended to give him a raise to the $1 million-per-year range, although UCF has not officially announced that. If that is true, White would be among the top 15-20 athletic directors in the country by annual salary, according to a list published by USA Today and compiled by Spencer Fane.
There is no need to list the myriad of White's accomplishments since coming to UCF in 2015 from Buffalo in the wake of George O'Leary's disastrous foray into athletic administration. Suffice it to say, White's coaching hires, fundraising campaigns and administrative work may have not only saved UCF's athletic program, but placed it on a trajectory toward becoming one of the preeminent college athletic institutions of this century.
It's also important to note that it's at least plausible that someone from Kansas may have leaked that whomever is conducting Kansas' A.D. search may have reached out to White's camp to gauge his interest and got subsequently laughed off the phone. Kansas' previous A.D., Sheahon Zenger, made a base salary of $700,000 per year, according to the Kansas City Star. Kansas is struggling to keep pace financially with its brethren in the Big 12 with regard to its football program, despite the generational success of its men's basketball program.
Either way, White's emphatic denial of interest in Kansas, plus UCF's apparent financial commitment to him, lead us to believe that UCF and Danny White are likely going to be an item for some time.