Right now, this piece is in the lead for my best example of “… and, a pony” wishful thinking for 2013. And it’s only mid-January.
Sauer has labeled buyouts such as Auburn’s $7.5 million goodbye package given banished head coach Gene Chizik in November “shameful.” As the president of the North American Association of Sports Economists, he carefully tracks coach salary trends, which seem at odds with the academic mission of universities.
“We’re getting close to that, if we’re not already there,” said Sauer, 56.
He blames a “non-cooperative competitive equilibrium.”
The professor’s explanation: “Given the rules of the game, (Nick Saban) is getting paid roughly market value. The rules of the game are the problem. The demand is there to compete and to win, so you have to go out and compete to win, so that bids up the price for things.”
College head coach salaries wouldn’t be so out-of-control with a salary cap applied by the NCAA or conferences.
A Rice vs. Idaho national championship game is more likely.
“(Schools) can’t cooperate like the NFL because it would be illegal,” Sauer said. “The NCAA is cornered by competitive forces and anti-trust law. When the NCAA tried to put in rules which attempted to restrict pay to (basketball) assistants, they were sued and lost.”
Damn it! If only the courts weren’t so short-sighted, the schools could keep all that money that
Jimmy Sexton is squeezing out of them they’re overpaying coaches and use it to… to… well, I don’t know. Maybe let Michael Adams invite a few more folks to a bowl game.
If a school doesn’t want to pay an absurd salary to a coach, nobody, not even Sexton, is holding a gun to its head forcing it to do so. That’s the marketplace at work. And eventually, if you make enough dumb decisions, you’ll be forced to cut back on your spending. Unless you’re Maryland, that is.