Not the kind of pay for play you were expecting.

Honestly, can it get any more shameless than this?

Athletic director Gene Smith will receive a bonus of more than $18,000 — one week of his base salary — for Ohio State’s Logan Stieber winning the 141-pound weight class at the NCAA wrestling championships.

Smith signed a new contract this year that pays him a bonus for “exceptional athletic achievements,” including Final Four and Bowl Championship Series appearances or titles won by individuals in any of 20 sports.

Logan must be very proud to play a part in growing Gene’s bank account.

It’s okay for somebody to profit directly from the achievements of a student-athlete.  Just not the student-athlete.


UPDATE:  I disagree with Dan Wetzel on playoffs, but he sure nails the compensation story.

College sports leaders claim that college sports is nothing but a non-profit running extracurricular activities designed to enhance the educational experience, all while refusing to engage in not even a hint of austerity that would seemingly come with it.

Their contracts are loaded with country club memberships, comp cars, hours of private jet usage and other perks that have nothing to do with supporting the student-athlete. They don’t protest when bowl directors bilk millions off their schools. They build outrageously opulent facilities and offices. They don’t hesitate to wring every last concession right down to a synchronized swimming bonus.

All the while they keep telling us they are overseeing something akin to a Little League team, yet they keep paying themselves like it’s the Red Sox.



Filed under It's Just Bidness

43 responses to “Not the kind of pay for play you were expecting.

  1. Dog in Fla

    I wonder what kind of bonus Gene got for outlasting Gordon Gee

  2. Chuck

    I’m as conservative as they come, but this is real pitchforks-and-torches type stuff. Is there language in his contract that says if athletes do something stupid that costs tOSU (tattoos, anyone?), any loss comes out of his check? I didn’t think so.

    • charlottedawg

      I’m pretty economically conservative myself, hence why i think student athletes should be paid. The marginal revenue/ value of an athlete is much much more than the marginal cost of room and board, plus the cost of capital for the facilities of a big time football/ basketball program.

  3. Rick

    Wow. That’s the kind of thing that can become a sound bite framing the debate for years to come.

  4. Bulldawg165

    Meh, it’s not that much different than football coaches getting bonuses for winning conference and national titles and that’s been happening for as long as I can remember.

    • Other than no coaching being involved – you think Gene could pick Logan out in a crowd? – not much different. Right.

      • Go Dawgs!

        I’m sure his agent would argue that Gene’s job is to work to create an environment with facilities, scheduling, support and coaching that enables Logan to win an NCAA championship in his sport, just as it is his job to create an environment with facilities, scheduling, support, and coaching that enables the Ohio State football and basketball teams to win championships. I am willing to believe to he can identify Logan in a crowd about as easily as he could identify his second string right guard.

        Now, whether an AD deserves bonuses based on championships for ANY athletic achievement, whether it’s a team title or an individual one, I think that’s a conversation that might be worth having. The guy isn’t out there coaching. I’d think performance incentives for an administrator would be fund raising or revenue benchmarks, not a ball bouncing a certain way on a hail mary.

        • Honestly, I don’t have a problem with Gene getting paid. He negotiated a contract with OSU that both parties signed.

          I have a problem blatantly assigning a value to an athletic achievement that is denied to the person who actually accomplished it, especially when, as in this case, it’s presented on the margins. Logan’s scholarship – which most would argue is his compensation – isn’t based on winning a national title. So here’s an individual achievement which the school expressly acknowledges has a monetary value that generates no compensation to the player. That ain’t right.

          • Go Dawgs!

            I agree with you there. Not only is he not getting money from the school, woe be unto him if he tries to get onto a box of Wheaties for his accomplishment.

          • South FL Dawg

            I get your point, but they could just bump up his pay and not worry about the link. I take issue with the amount of money being paid regardless of how it’s structured. The pay is driven by revenues that would be flowing no matter who was AD.

          • Bulldawg165

            “I have a problem blatantly assigning a value to an athletic achievement that is denied to the person who actually accomplished it”

            So tell me again, how’s this different from football coaches getting bonuses for conference and/or national titles? The most likely rebuttal you have is that the Nick Sabans of the world find ways to help the athletes win games, to which I would respond that the AD’s provide the resources for the Nick Sabans of the world to do so. It’s really not that much different.

            Although, I suppose you might also get angry at the CEO of McDonald’s if he receives a bonus based on revenue targets because, you know, he didn’t actually flip the burger that generated the sale.

            • Again, I don’t have a problem with the Smiths and Sabans getting what they’ve contracted for. I simply have a problem with the whole “fine for me, but not for thee” application here that’s unique to college athletics. Your hypothetical burger flipper isn’t told he has to remain an amateur to keep his job.

              I get the impression you don’t really care to see a distinction.

              • Bulldawg165

                Your argument has changed since your original response to me. I originally said that an AD getting paid for student-athlete athletic achievements is no different than coaches getting paid for such and you disagreed. My next response was geared as a rebuttal to such.

                I’ve never argued against your point that the entire thing is BS because I partially agree.

                • I originally said that an AD getting paid for student-athlete athletic achievements is no different than coaches getting paid for such and you disagreed.

                  Eh, more like a side issue to the point I was making in my post.

              • Mayor of Dawgtown

                “I’ve begun to see the absurdity of it all.” Yves Montand as Jean Pierre Sarti in the motion picture “Grand Prix” circa 1967.

      • Dog in Fla

        “you think Gene could pick Logan out in a crowd?”

        That’s only because to Gene, all wrestlers look alike

  5. Normaltown Mike

    It’s too bad for the wrestler he can’t ply his trade in an open market where grappling & wrestling are put to work for fortune and fame….

  6. South FL Dawg

    By some of the logic I read here, Deans have done a poor job of getting bonuses for Dean’s List students……

    • diving duck

      People don’t pay money for the services on someone making the dean’s list. Deans aren’t leveraging the efforts and demand of the non-compensated dean’s listers to make themselves and others very rich.

      • South FL Dawg

        Oh I don’t disagree. It was my sarcastic sense of humor because I don’t believe that wrestling achievements bring anything more to the school that academic achievements do.

    • DawgPhan

      Dean’s have negotiated contracts based on their market. If their market wont support it, then they dont get it. If it did, they would. I bet there is some academic out there getting bonuses based on student achievement.

  7. Dog in Fla

    @ AlphaDawg
    2:04 PM
    “Aren’t those Michigan colors?”
     202dawg
    2:23 PM
    “West By God…”

    After being runnoft for badmouthing the padres at Notre Dame and squeezing Jim’s daughter and/or grand-daughter too tight at the SAE house in Columbus, Gordon bounced off his head and landed as President (for the second or third time) at University of West Virginia (colors: blue and/or gold with the smell of burning couch* in the evening) where Buffalo Bill** coaches



    Agreed, that is a bit much.

  9. Spike

    I’d hit that..

  10. Always Someone Else's Fault

    Oh, come on, Senator. Wrestlers don’t win championships. Organizations win championships. Everyone knows that.

    Jerry Krause

  11. Skeptic Dawg

    I find it curious that so many are in favor of paying players. As Dawg fans we all know that at UGA players receive $71 a week. That does not include a single $100 handshake, Nor a dollar of Pell Grant money, not one red cent of housing allowance (for those kids that live off campus and split an apartment). Yes, college is a rough financial time for many students. But why should players receive payment when they are currently bein paid via scholarship? Is it that harmful that conferences and universities have negotiated massive media deals to further promote said athlete and potentially increase their market value and earning potential? I say no! Players do not deserve to be paid while in college. Maybe the Ivy and Patriot Leagues have it right.

    • Is it that harmful that conferences and universities have negotiated massive media deals to further promote said athlete and potentially increase their market value and earning potential?

      You think that’s been their motivation? Boy, all that extra money must have been a pleasant surprise.😉

      • Skeptic Dawg

        Schools operate to generate revenue these days. That’s not a surprise, nor relatively new. A select few view winning as the means to increasing their bottoms line. Other schools hoard their Reserve Funds. Either way the kids benefit. And no, I have no delusion as to why the conferences and schools negotiated big TV deals. But TV exposure to a national audience certainly does not hurt the players nor the schools. The college “student”-athlete is not hurting. Are they rolling in money? No, but what college kid is? Yes, your average student can get a job. But does your average student receive a stipend? Maybe from Mom and Dad, just like an athlete can. Either way, I am not in favor of paying the student athletes. As I said above, the Ivy and Patriot Leagues just might have it right.

    • charlottedawg

      So in a hypothetical world where college football and basketball players were free agents and could be compensated monetarily, I’m sure marquee programs like Georgia and Texas could simply offer an athletic scholarship consisting of a free education, room and board, and the opportunity to play football and that would be more than sufficient to win the services of a player like AJ Green, Todd Gurley, or Johnny Manziel, because that’s the true value these players bring to the respective school right?

  12. Mayor of Dawgtown

    Having a college scholarship include a spending money allowance is not “paying players.” We recruit these kids from underprivileged backgrounds and throw them into an environment where everybody else is wearing $100 outfits routinely, yet expect them to get along on $0. That’s bad enough, but when the school and its coaches/administrators make millions of dollars off the efforts of those kids, that is the height of hypocrisy. Including enough spending money as part of the scholarship to make the college experience enjoyable does not equal “loss of amateur status” and is not turning the players into “professionals.” That’s just BS invented by assholes who want to keep all the money for themselves.

    • Skeptic Dawg

      Mayor, I completely disagree. These kids (rich or dirt poor) are handed an opportunity that is life altering due to the fact that they can run, block, catch or throw a ball. The vast majority of college football players would never gain admittance into a major university without athletic talent. They are trained in their desired profession by outstanding (for the most part) coaches, given the best conditions to build their bodies, feed and then given their choice of studies. All due to athletic talent. Handled properly, these players are set for life with a college education, name recognition due to their sport and for a select few a career in the NFL, NBA or MLB. I know we disagree on this matter, but I believe them to be well compensated. It is my belief that paying college players will bring down an already college athletic model.

  13. AusDawg85

    The problem is too much money flowing into amateur sports, and the solution seems focused on spreading that wealth around. Wouldn’t it be nice if someone could suggest a way to get the money back out?

  14. 69Dawg

    I’ll bet the O’Bannon plaintiff attorney’s are doing back flips. This is a real smoking gun. They can show that the players are getting screwed and by how much. If an administrator can profit directly from the achievement of a single athlete and it = $18,000 lets just do some math. And all you whiners about the scholarship thing being so great, there are 120 players 85 of which get anything, the rest are just cannon fodder. Beside how would it look if a Mark Richt had a contract provision that paid them a bonus if one of his players made All-American or won the Heisman. This guy was an individual that due to his performance the ahole AD got $18,000.00 and the kid gets a nice trophy, that he can’t sell until he graduates or the NCAA will screw him. This is just insane.