FAMU Names Derek Horne As New Athletic Director

NORFOLK, Va. - Florida A&M University has offered Derek Horne the job to run its athletic department at a salary that will more than double what he currently makes at the University of Mississippi.

In a letter that was sent by FAMU president James Ammons on July 22, Horne was offered $200,000. That would give him a salary increase of $120,000 over what he made as a senior associate athletics director at Ole Miss, according to sources in Oxford.

Ammons confirmed Friday that Horne has accepted the job.

"I think Derek has a wide-range of experiences at the University of
Mississippi and in the SEC, a conference that is a football powerhouse,"
Ammons said.

Ammons also touted Horne's leadership abilities, saying that he has "the
potential to help us usher in a new era in Rattlers sports."

He will receive a three-year contract, according to the letter.

The offer was made two weeks after Horne interviewed for the position. Mike Smith, who has been the interim AD since Bill Hayes' retirement in December, also interviewed for the job. Hayes' annual salary was $175,000.

"This offer is conditioned upon your written acceptance, and successful completion and review of a criminal background check ," Ammons wrote in his offer letter.

Ammons said he will recommend to FAMU's Board of Trustees that Horne be hired, following clearance on the criminal background check .

Horne, a former basketball player at Ole Miss, spent 14 years with the
Rebels' athletic department. He has a strong background in athletic
management and fundraising. He also is known for appealing to alumnus and corporations for financial support.

Ammons had said he wanted to have the position filled by the start of this football season. FAMU plays its first game on Sept. 2 against the University of Miami.

Considering the offer, Horne has met all that Ammons said he wanted in his next athletic director. His role at Ole Miss was as an associate AD for external affairs.

The offer is a strong indication that Ammons believes Horne can help get the athletic department out of a deficit that is just over $4 million.

"I need someone who knows, understands and appreciates the business of athletics - the fundraising, the marketing, the managing and managing the resources that we have," Ammons said.

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