I hate to say I told you so.

Reading this post about SEC assistant coaches’ salaries reminded me about the debate Jerry Hinnen and I had about what he referred to as a “new way of financial thinking” in the SEC in the wake of what Tennessee and Auburn shelled out for assistants when Kiffin and Chizik were hired.

For once, I think I’m gonna declare victory and go home.

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12 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

12 responses to “I hate to say I told you so.

  1. TennesseeDawg

    Someone could put up with Bob Davie long enough to have him quoted in an article?

  2. Hogbody Spradlin

    Gus is going to have to earn his pay this year.

  3. Marmot

    Most of your and Jerry’s argument is rendered moot since Chizik won the NC. Jacob’s can always say he knew what he was buying, and he knew it was a great deal. But great deal or not, he can claim to have wanted Chizik whatever the cost, and he more or less has claimed that (he said he knew Chizik would be the next coach in 2004).

    But is there any doubt that Auburn and Tennessee started this assistant coaching salary arms race? Paying assistants top dollar was an idea who’s time was way overdue at a place like Auburn. Auburn is invested enough in football to be a good team on average, but not traditionally invested enough to fend off Texas raiding their assistants. For Auburn to take the next step as far as coaching quality AND stability they needed to jump out in front of the assistant pay curve. It seems inevitable that would lead to greater salaries all over the SEC.

    And if Jacob’s had a set budget for hiring a staff then there is a fair argument that he chose to load up on assistants and make a budget head coaching hire. In Jacob’s case it was the best of all worlds since his budget coach was his first choice (supposedly), and maybe he was able to sell the “strategy” Jerry discussed to boosters.

    • Gotta say, Senator, I really don’t see how a huge increase in assistant salaries–which I would guess has risen dramatically faster in the SEC since the Chizik/Kiffin hires than head coaching salaries– disproves my argument that teams would follow Auburn/UT’s footsteps by spending a greater percentage of their coaching budget on assistants than the head man.

      You may have been (or in Auburn’s case, probably were) correct in your original rebuttal that this may have happened by accident more than plan. But it seems to be happening all the same, no?

      • Well, maybe I’m nitpicking, but you saw that increase coming out of head coaches’ pockets, while I saw it coming simply as a result of a boatload more money pouring into SEC schools’ coffers.

        Even Auburn isn’t following Auburn’s plan, if such a thing existed in the first place.

        • I don’t know if I would’ve said “coming out of the head coach’s pocket,” exactly, but I would have said the economic emphasis was on hiring the best possible staff rather than simply hiring the best possible head coach. A redistribution of funds, say, something different from what we saw when Saban was first hired at Alabama and his salary was in the neighborhood of 10 times what his coordinators made. Contrast that with what just happened at Florida, where Muschamp is earning less than his head coaching predecessor (IIRC) and Weis dramatically more than Addazio.

          Again, I won’t argue that this may have been a simple function of Auburn and Tennessee falling backwards into the coaching staffs they got rather than a concerted plan. But intentional or not, I do think that redistribution is happening, and yeah, I think it began most prominently at AU and UT.

          That said, I’ll also agree we’re picking nits. And I’ll happily concede the victory here, having won one here:

          http://blutarsky.wordpress.com/2010/08/30/raining-on-jerry-hinnens-parade-not-that-i-want-to/

          Call it even?

  4. Skeptic Dawg

    So where is the R.O.I. with our assist. coaching staff. After reading that the UGA assist. staff as a whole ranks in the top 10 by pulling in 2.54 million a year my 1st thought was: Better win this year. In the business world one would expect tremendous results from such a highly paid staff. 6-7, 7-6, or 8-5 does not equate to 2.54 million a year. If CMR and staff do not show marked improvement this season, it would make financial sense to start over. The pressure is on boys.

    • In the business world, all anyone would care about would be the financial bottom line. On that front, Georgia during Richt’s tenure has seen the most profitable period in its athletic history. If those numbers don’t drop, contrary to your assertion, it wouldn’t make financial success to replace Richt, because the athletic department would have to bear the expense of buying out the two biggest contracts on the staff, Richt’s and Grantham’s as well as the cost of the search for a new coach.

      I’m not saying Richt couldn’t be gone with another bad year, but it’s a stretch to portray that as a financial decision.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Spot on analysis, Senator. This very thing is the reason that I do not think that CMR is really on the hot seat even now. Only when the school starts to see a downturn financially would CMR really be in trouble. Plus, look at the following: 7-3-1; 6-4; 10-1; 7-4; 8-1-2; 5-5-1; 5-5; 11-1; 7-4; 7-4-1; 6-6; 9-3; 10-2; 5-6; 9-2-1; 6-5; 12-0; 10-2; 11-1; 10-1-1; 7-4-1; 7-3-2; 8-4; 9-3; 9-3. What do these numbers represent? Why, Vince Dooley’s record at UGA, of course. Note the 4 seasons at .500 or less not to mention the several 6 or 7 win seasons. If CMR is being held to the Dooley standard he’s got at least 2-3 more bad years before he’s gone.

      • Skeptic Dawg

        The increase in revenue can be attributed to the heightened popularity in college football nationally that has been mentioned by multiple people. My point is that UGA must see results on the filed to justify the such high assist. coach salaries. It makes zero sense to pay inflated salaries and yet receive below standard results.