It’s no surprise that Krebs tried to keep his consulting deal with Cass a secret
Krebs has been paying Tim Cass, Krebs’ former deputy, $23,776 to continue to help Krebs run his department
Prior to his departure, Cass was investigated and then cleared of wrongdoing in the case of $63,000 that went missing through misuse of a charge card
BY RICHARD STEVENS
The “Good Old Boy” department at UNM – that would be Lobo athletics for folks who haven’t been reading the sports pages – headed by Emperor Paul Krebs has struck again. Krebs has yet again embarrassed himself and his department while slapping the University of New Mexico in the face.
And yet again, Krebs’ actions have either been ignored or, God forbid, condoned by UNM President Robert G. Frank, who obviously does not pay attention to the welcome mat to his university or the guy who runs it.
The latest slap is news that Krebs’ Kingdom has been paying Tim Cass, Krebs’ former deputy, $23,776 to continue to help Krebs run his department. Cass is a consultant with a tennis expertise in a deal the two men inked the day after Cass resigned to take a job in Florida.
Geez – if you need help running your shop from a former employee now living more than 1,500 miles away, then maybe you should look for retirement accommodations in Florida for yourself. Maybe there’s a bungalow available next to the Seinfelds in Del Boca Vista.
It’s no surprise that Krebs tried to keep his consulting deal with Cass a secret and that Cass did not appear on UNM’s payroll of athletic staff members. Frankly, this consulting job is an embarrassment.
It’s also kind of insulting that Cass would even accept this fee.
Cass’ career started at UNM as a player and later as a coach. When you talk about paying it back, Cass is paying it forward – to his bank account. Go Lobos! Woof, woof, woof!
It was bad enough when UNM kicked the Gathering of Nations out of The Pit because UNM was sliding $2,300 into the hole. The Gathering of Nations shindig brought millions of dollars to the Albuquerque community. This is the community UNM leans on for fan support, boosters, gifts-in-kind, etc.
The event’s founder, Derek Mathews, used the phrase “disrespect and disregard” in describing UNM’s actions. UNM is now doing the same thing to the community in dishing out $23,776 to Cass. UNM also could have used this $23,766 to offset its Pit losses from the Gathering of Nations event and kept an important cultural event for another 10 years.
Cass bolted UNM and its dysfunctional athletic department to take a job with the U.S. Tennis Association. Prior to his departure, Cass was investigated and then cleared of wrongdoing in the case of $63,000 that went missing through misuse of a charge card over in the Lobo men’s basketball department. The case against an employee Cass supervised is now in the hands of the Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office.
The fiscal hijinks at Krebs’ department go back years. You might recall in 2010, about $4,000 went missing from a locked drawer in the Lobo basketball office. Krebs was told then to do a better job with money management.
Cass, whose title was chief operations officer, did not face disciplinary action after UNM spent an amazing $64,000 in man hours auditing the alleged embezzlement. Again, there’s not much accountability among the dukes, earls and barons in Krebs’ Kingdom. But at least someone took notice. Krebs’ department now has a financial babysitter keeping an eye on the green stuff.
Krebs is good at firing people, not renewing contracts, losing notes from HR investigations (Locksley-gate), kicking Native Americans out of The Pit, devaluing Lobo women’s basketball – the list goes on and on.
Now, it’s time for Krebs to fire someone else – Cass. Or maybe Cass will do the right thing and resign.
In the grand scheme of things, the needless tossing of $23,766 to a former UNM employee now living in Florida probably isn’t huge. Krebs will probably just fire somebody and make up the $23,766 difference – but that kind of money might be a significant sum to a professor struggling to educate young people at a time of cutbacks on the academic side of UNM.
Krebs’ stink bombs continue to cast an awful odor over the Pit while the integrity and accountability of his department shrinks and shrinks. The fan base is noticing. Will President Frank?
This isn’t to suggest Krebs should be tarred and feathered and ridden out of town on a rail. But it may be time someone started looking for a rail.
Richard Stevens is a former sports writer for The Albuquerque Tribune. More recently, he was an insider at the Lobo athletic department. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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