Belfast Telegraph

Declan Kidney lands €100,000 job as UCC's director of sport

By Daniel McConnell

Former Ireland and Munster coach Declan Kidney has landed himself a plum job as director of sport at his alma mater, University College Cork, on a salary of up to €100,000.

His appointment was announced by UCC President, Dr Michael Murphy, in a note to college staff yesterday.

The soft-spoken former teacher, who graduated from UCC with a degree in Commerce in 1982, was sacked as Ireland boss at the end of last spring's poor Six Nations campaign.

Kidney, who coached Ireland to Triple Crown and Grand Slam success and guided Munster to Heineken Cup glory, is to take up his new post on September 2.

Officially, UCC said yesterday Mr Kidney will be paid on a salary grade of between €73,000-€101,000. However, sources at the college said last night that it was highly unlikely he would be paid at that lower end of the salary scale.

In his note, Dr Murphy said: "Colleagues, I am delighted to inform you that Declan Kidney has been appointed to the post of Director of Sport and Physical Activity at UCC."

Dr Murphy, who himself last year caused controversy when he spoke of his struggles of living within his €232,000 a year salary, lauded Kidney's sporting achievements.

"Declan has worked at the highest levels of sport, having coached rugby at provincial and international level, achieving Grand Slam and Triple Crown success and reaching the quarter finals of the 2011 Rugby World Cup," he said.

For his part, Kidney said he was "really looking forward" to working at UCC. "I firmly believe in a holistic approach to education and see physical activity, be it at the highest elite level or participating just for fun, to be an integral part of this experience," he said yesterday.

His appointment brings the Ballincollig native back to his alma mater before becoming an accounting and mathematics teacher and careers guidance officer at Presentation Brothers College, Cork.

Despite the highs and successes of the Triple Crown and Grand Slam in 2009, Kidney's reign as Ireland coach never again hit those heights. A quarter final appearance at the 2011 World Cup was deemed to be an underachievement.

In April, after a disastrous Six Nations, the IRFU announced that it would not be offering a new contract to Kidney -- who earned a reported 350,000 a year -- with his role as Ireland head coach ceasing immediately.

Yet, Kidney's coaching pedigree is undeniable. He led Munster to the Heineken Cup finals of 2000 and 2002. Having then coached with Ireland and Leinster, he returned to Munster, who lifted the Heineken Cup in 2006 and 2008.

Belfast Telegraph Digital


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