“Are those people worth it? Of course not.”

According to USA Today, the average salary for a major college head coach has now topped $1 million per year. Again, salary – that doesn’t include perks and bonuses (including Dink NeSmith’s wet dream) that may be paid on top of that figure.

At least 50 coaches are making seven figures, seven more than a year ago. At least a dozen are pulling down $2 million or more, up from nine in 2006. Last season, Stoops was the only one making more than $3 million…

… On Thursday — four days after Miles and Louisiana State landed a berth in college football’s national championship game and five days after he ruled out a move to Michigan — LSU’s Board of Supervisors will gather in Baton Rouge and likely approve an extension of his contract through 2012. It figures to make Miles a $3-million-a-year man.

Another one.

Four coaches — Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops, Alabama’s Nick Saban, Florida’s Urban Meyer and Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz — already have cracked the $3 million mark, leading a spiral that shows no sign of slowing…

Tommy Bowden, who in nine seasons at Clemson sports an overall record there of 69-41 (62.7% winning percentage) , an ACC record of 42-30 (58.33% winning percentage), has never won an ACC or division title and has a losing record in bowl games, just signed a contract extension that will reportedly raise his salary to around $2.2 million per year.

Tommy Tuberville, who led his Auburn squad to an 8-4 regular season record in 2007, agreed to a two-year contract extension that will make his average salary for the next six years around $3.3 million.

And then there’s Les Miles.

Miles, who’s making $1.8 million this season, already had three salary escalators in his contract.

Two require LSU to make him at least the SEC’s fifth-highest paid coach if the Tigers win 10 games and third-highest if they claim a conference championship; the third guarantees he’ll become the nation’s third-highest paid coach if LSU wins the national title. The stipulations are included in his new agreement.

The 10 wins and SEC championship are in hand, the latter secured with a 21-14 victory against Tennessee. That makes Auburn’s Tommy Tuberville the immediate earnings target for Miles and LSU.

Very nice.

Well, except for this:

At LSU, there appears to be no pause. Miles likely will go from a $10 million guarantee over five years to $15 million.

Bertman says Miles’ raise likely will result in an increase in ticket prices (currently topping out at $45 a game) or preferred-seat licenses (now as high as $500 a game in addition to the ticket price).

No likely end in sight, either.

“Is this a favorable trend? The answer is: Of course not,” says LSU Chancellor Sean O’Keefe, who worked out the new deal with Miles. “That said, it’s also market dynamics. The value of things is determined by the demand that exists. There’s nothing unfair about that.”

Especially when you do the math involved with big college athletic departments.

At LSU, a football team that finished 11-2 and ranked No. 3 in 2006 accounted for 63% of the school’s athletics revenue for the year. It also accounted for a lion’s share of the spending — more than $16 million — but turned an almost $32 million profit that helped underwrite the school’s non-moneymaking sports.

Not all athletics departments are self-supporting, however. The NCAA’s latest data shows that more than four of every five major-college sports programs need institutional subsidies, student fees and other supplements to balance their budgets.


UPDATE: It looks like Jimbo Fisher won’t be missing too many meals, either. $1 million a year for an assistant coach – wow…


Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

4 responses to ““Are those people worth it? Of course not.”

  1. SURELY there’s a $400,000 bunus in there somewhere for Dave Wannstache. He’s the real reason Les Miles got into the MNC. I’d venture to say a fruit basket from PWD is not enough.


  2. SonuvaDawg

    Speaking of the Dinkus, boy he hasn’t had much to say about our recent success. Reckon why he was so quick to bash but disappeared in the midst of what turned out to be a great season?


  3. Sonuva, the Dinkster strikes me as the kind of guy whose ego lets him go around taking credit for Georgia’s resurgence this season.


  4. Ally

    The whole Clemson thing yesterday just floored me. What are those fools doing? They’re now paying Tammy Bowden “Mark Richt money” for absolutely nothing. I knew he sucked but didn’t realize he’s something like 69-41 in 9 years there. No BCS bowls, only 2 top 25 finishes – never in the top 10, never won his division (much less the ACC Championship). And a MNC is nothing but a pipe dream. Yet, he gets a lengthy extension, over $2 mil/year and a hefty buyout clause.
    People have often said Tammy’s not smart enough to win the big games at Clemson. Maybe not, but he sure as hell was smart enought to sucker IPTAY and the Clemson faithful.
    Wow. CMR deserves a BIG raise.