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UT Promises to Pay Former Athletics Director About $3 Million

Former University of Texas at Austin Athletics Director Steve Patterson will receive up to $3 million from his old school after his "resignation," according to an exit agreement released by the school Wednesday.

Steve Patterson wraps up questions at a Texas Tribune event on May 15, 2014. At the time, Patterson was athletics director a…

Former University of Texas at Austin Athletics Director Steve Patterson will receive up to $3 million from his old school after his "resignation," according to an exit agreement released by the school Wednesday.

Patterson and the university reached that agreement after he left his job under pressure in September. He had four years left on his contract at the time at a salary of almost $1.5 million per year.

But Patterson and the university opted to nullify that contract so Patterson wouldn't have to be reassigned to a lesser role, and so the university would not have to pay him for the four years in the contract.

Under the deal, the school will pay Patterson his 2015-16 salary by the end of the year and an additional $1.5 million by the end of January.

If Patterson gets a new job or does consulting work in the 2016-17, the university will get back the amount he earns from his new job.

Patterson will also collect compensation for his unpaid vacation and holiday time from UT-Austin and will receive $200,000 worth of performance incentives that he earned last fiscal year.

In the agreement, Patterson and the school also promised not to publicly denigrate each other.

Patterson left UT-Austin after a rocky tenure. He served less than two years and frustrated fans and boosters with his perceived impersonal style and focus on generating new revenue. Many critics argued he ran the department like a professional franchise.

He was replaced by interim athletics director Mike Perrin, a Houston lawyer and former Longhorn football player.

Disclosure: The University of Texas at Austin is a corporate sponsor of The Texas Tribune. A complete list of Tribune donors and sponsors can be viewed here.

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