Baylor is the hottest athletics department in the country right now, and temperature began rising when Mack Rhoades came to town.
Hired in 2016, Rhoades to Baylor was a stunner. It was stunning that Rhoades would leave Missouri for Baylor, given the state of the BU brand at that time. And it was stunning that Baylor could pull a sitting SEC AD, even in normal times, and especially given the news of that time.
Rhoades hired Matt Rhule, who then turned Baylor football around. When Rhule left, Rhoades hired Dave Aranda, a complete departure in temperament, personality and football background from Rhule, and Aranda took Baylor to heights Rhule never achieved.
In short, Rhoades deserved an extension and on Monday he got one.
Baylor has inked Rhoades to a 10-year extension which, the school notes, "will allow the two-time Athletics Director of the Year to complete his career at Baylor."
The move comes as Rhoades' named had surfaced for the AD opening at Penn State. Baylor did not release the terms of the contract, but Sandy Barbour was set to make $1.369 million at Penn State in 2022-23, so Rhoades' deal is likely north of that.
"Championship athletics is woven into the Baylor experience, and it's a key recruiting tool for prospective students, the engagement of current students and the positioning of our brand," BU president Dr. Linda Livingstone said. "Mack Rhoades has a deep commitment to Baylor's Christian mission. His personal and departmental alignment carries through in the development of our student-athletes in 'Preparing Champions for Life,' which provides a championship-level experience in academics, athletics, character formation and their spiritual growth. Mack's leadership has been nationally recognized over the past five-and-a-half years, and his name has been connected to several opportunities as of late. This new contract reaffirms that Baylor is where he wants to finish his career and continue the work on our four Athletics pillars. We look forward to Mack's continued success leading Baylor Athletics over the next decade."
Baylor became the first school in Big 12 history to win its football, men's basketball and women's basketball (regular season) championships in the same academic year. That feat has only been equaled four times ever at the Power 5 level, according to FootballScoop research.
"Amy and I have felt called to be at Baylor University and remain an integral part of Baylor's future," Rhoades said. "It is a blessing to work with President Livingstone, who leads our University with great integrity and vision, and to continue to work alongside our championship coaches, staff and student-athletes for the next decade as we continue our mission of 'Preparing Champions for Life.' We are humbled and appreciative of the confidence reflected in us by the Board of Regents, President Livingstone and University leadership. We are excited Baylor has given us the opportunity to finish my career as the University's Athletics Director."
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.