USA Today reported Monday that Razorbacks football coach John L. Smith has deferred 71 percent of his total pay, which could raise legal questions in his $40.7 million bankruptcy.
According to the story, available in full here, Smith arranged to have $600,000 of his $850,000 in pay deferred until after the season, with a $300,000 payment on Dec. 31 and another $300,000 on Feb. 23. The money would come from the nonprofit Razorback Foundation.
USA Today says that by deferring that pay until after his bankruptcy filing, Smith could keep it away from his creditors.
The newspaper also provides a timeline of when Smith signed his employment contract versus his bankruptcy filings and amendments.
Last week, Smith has amended his bankruptcy filing Wednesday to show $40.7 million in debt, up from the $25.7 million he showed in his original filing. Smith's Chapter 7 filing is tied to real estate investments that went bad after the 2008 economic crisis.
The amendment filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Western District, also shows that he has $1.3 million in assets. Smith's original filing on Sept. 19 reported $1.2 million in assets. (You also access the filing here.)
Also last week, USA Today quoted one of Smith's business partners, Louisville developer Steve Canfield, who accused Smith of leaving his partners "holding the bag on a lot of things."
At a news conference following football practice on Thursday, Smith responded to Canfield's comments.
"Well, when this is all over I could go through it with you over who held what bag," he said.
After last weekend's win over Auburn, Arkansas faces Kentucky at home on Saturday. On Friday, Smith is scheduled to be in court for a hearing tied to his bankruptcy.