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Virginia lacrosse coach contracts show Marc Van Arsdale stays, even though Dom Starsia has left

Terms of Van Arsdale's employment with the University provide for year-long notice period

Ohio Machine v Hamilton Nationals Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

The contracts between the University of Virginia and the Virginia men's lacrosse coaches, obtained through a Virginia FOIA request, suggest that long-time assistant Marc Van Arsdale will continue as a University employee through at least May 2017.

Streaking The Lawn requested the employment agreements, including any notices of termination or non-renewal, for Dom Starsia and each of the assistant coaches: Van Arsdale, Joe Starsia, Peter Krawczyk, and Corey Bulken. Both Dom and Joe Starsia received letters confirming their terminations without cause (as opposed to any notice of non-renewal) on May 23—the day the University officially announced Dom Starsia's departure from the program. Under the terms of their agreements, Dom will receive his regular salary (plus longevity bonus) through January 24, 2017, while Joe's salary continuation runs only through September 4, 2016. Bulken is a volunteer coach, and Krawczyk does not have a separate contract with the University.

The bigger surprise, however, was Van Arsdale's contract. The University renewed Van Arsdale's employment for two years, with the term of appointment beginning June 25, 2015. Under the terms of that agreement, Van Arsdale is considered a member of the "administrative General Faculty," with the faculty position of Lecturer in the Department of Athletics and the administrative title of Assistant Men's Lacrosse Coach. By contrast, the assistant football coaches under Mike London were all hired as University staff and not as faculty.

The distinction between staff and faculty matters when it comes to non-renewal of employment. Van Arsdale's employment is not guaranteed "if Dominic Starsia leaves the position of Head Coach for any reason whatsoever." But non-renewal of Van Arsdale's employment is subject to the notice provisions of the policies for administrative faculty. Under those policies, an administrative faculty member whose service to the University is more than two years—such as Van Arsdale—"should receive notice of non-reappointment twelve months before the expiration of their appointment. Regardless of when they receive notice, they are entitled to twelve months of employment following that notice."

Breaking that out of legalese: according to the University's FOIA response, as of June 1st, Van Arsdale had not received a notice of non-renewal or a letter of termination as the Starsias did. Once Dom Starsia left, Van Arsdale was no longer guaranteed employment "beyond the notice period" in the faculty policies. But that notice period is a year long. Which all means that Marc Van Arsdale will be on the University payroll through at least June 1, 2017—two days after the 2017 national championship game in Foxborough.

Non-renewal is different from termination, and Van Arsdale could presumably still be terminated without cause as the Starsias were. If Van Arsdale were to receive the same salary continuation as the Starsias—payment of base salary through the end date of the agreement—then Van Arsdale will be paid by the University through June 24, 2017.