This might be the best piece of sports journalism I've read in years. The two reporters for the Washington Post reporters have turned every rumor I've heard about Max Siegel in recent years into fact.
Literally, it's amazing.
1) It confirms what I always believed. We shouldn't be praising Max because USATF's revenues have nearly doubled. That's almost entirely because of the Nike deal - none of the other deals are even worth 7 figures. And Siegel didn't even negotiate the Nike deal - USATF is paying two former Nike exceuctives $23.75 million for negotiating USATF's deal with Nike!!!
"While Siegel has added a wide array of new sponsors, according to two people with knowledge of financials, the majority of the new cash flowing into USA Track and Field is coming from one sponsor: Nike, which is paying a reported $20 million annually. All of the other partnerships involve six-figure amounts of money, at most, along with in-kind products, according to two people with knowledge of financials."
2) Siegel travels lavishly. Ritz Carlton hotels and private planes.
Check out this excuse:
"At the Olympic marathon trials in Los Angeles this year, staff stayed at a J.W. Marriott while Siegel and other executives stayed at a Ritz-Carlton. The Marriott was overbooked, Geer said, so Siegel and other executives opted for the Ritz."
Another excuse from Jill Geer for Siegel flying 1st class.
â€œThe business of USATF has evolved from what would be more of almost a charity model to a true sports-business model. And with that comes attracting executives who choose USATF over other executive opportunities,â€ Geer said. â€œEssentially, we run our business more like a business.â€
3) He's had USATF spend a ton of money - possibly more than $200,000 ayear on a marketing company that once billed itself as a "Max Siegel company."
4) If #3 isn't against the law, he apparently did break the law by having USATF buy him a computer (which he then said he'd reimburse them for) so he could save the sales tax. This from a guy who makes more than $1.7 million a year.
5) Text message reveal that Siegel has made threats to people, "I will *** anyone up who goes after me personally."
The Post even has the text messages.
Bravo. Great work Will Hobson and Steven Rich.