Category Archives: SEC Football

That money’s got to go somewhere.

Here are gross revenue and profit figures for all 14 SEC football programs for the fiscal year 07/01/16 to 06/30/17.  (Keep in mind that “profit” is an amorphous term, considering the way athletic departments cook the books with certain expense items like tuition.)

  • Vanderbilt:  $29.0 million ($5.7 million profit)
  • Missouri:  $29.2 million ($8.1 million profit)
  • Mississippi State:  $35.7 million ($12.6 million profit)
  • Kentucky:  $36.4 million ($10.8 million profit)
  • South Carolina:  $60.3 million ($25.5 million profit)
  • Ole Miss:  $62.7 million ($32.3 million profit)
  • Texas A&M:  $70.4 million ($37.3 million profit)
  • Arkansas:  $71.2 million ($33.9 million profit)
  • Florida:  $82.8 million ($49.1 million profit)
  • LSU:  $86.2 million ($56.1 million profit)
  • Auburn:  $91.7 million ($48.9 million profit)
  • Georgia:  $93.3 million ($56.9 million profit)
  • Alabama:  $108.1 million ($45.9 million profit)
  • Tennessee:  $110.7 million ($78.1 million profit)

Quite the bang for the buck there, Volnation.

It’s a little surprising to see Florida’s relatively middle of the pack numbers there, income-wise.  It’s not so surprising, though, to compare the Gators’ profit number with that of Alabama’s when you compare staff expenses.

Alabama, you probably won’t be surprised to learn, has steadily raised its staff compensation over the past decade.  You may be surprised to see the rate at which it’s done so.

Coach 2009* 2020 %change Change
Off. coord. $416,515 $1,200,000 288.1% $783,485
Def. coord. $416,515 $1,100,000 264.1% $683,485
D-line $289,246 $750,000 259.3% $460,754
LBs $376,020 $650,000 172.9% $273,980
Secondary $271,891 $350,000 128.7% $78,109
TE/QB $335,526 $875,000 260.8% $539,474
Sp. teams  — $550,000 $550,000
WRs $260,322 $525,000 201.7% $264,678
RBs $289,246 $425,000 146.9% $135,754
O-line $460,948 $490,000 106.3% $29,052
Total $3,116,229 $6,915,000 221.9% $3,798,771

In case you’re wondering, the asterisk indicates that the 2009 salaries have been adjusted for inflation, which means that’s a real world increase rate of 221.9% in a decade.  (Yes, some of that can be attributed to the addition of a tenth coach this season, but, still.)  The result is that Alabama is paying this staff almost $7 million to coach this season.

By comparison, Florida, even with paying Todd Grantham a record amount for a Gator assistant coach, is paying its staff less than $5 million in 2018.  (Is there another SEC assistant coach making less than $100,000 this season, as Christian Robinson is?)

Give ‘Bama credit for pouring its profits back into the program if you like, but nobody’s missing any meals at either school.  The ultimate point here is that SEC schools are able to lavish huge salaries on coaches because they have lots of income rolling in and only so many places to spend it.  If you think things are at the point where coaches make more money than is justified, that’s the way the market is structured today.  It certainly makes Jimmy Sexton’s life easier.

As a side note, it sure will be interesting to revisit these numbers in a couple of years, when Georgia’s revenues and profits for the 2018 fiscal year are tallied, don’t you think?



Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

This is what a gap looks like.

Research maven AirForceDawg compiles a list of SEC roster talent, based on recruiting rankings.

Currently enrolled + summer inbounds:

1. Alabama (83 rated players avg. 3.93 stars): 12 5-stars, 54 4-stars, 16 3-stars, 1 2-star
2. UGA (84 rated players avg. 3.86 stars): 13 5-stars, 47 4-stars, 23 3-stars, 1 2-star [note: doesn’t include Chigbu or Gibbs]
3. LSU (77 rated players avg. 3.65 stars): 4 5-stars, 44 4-stars, 27 3-stars, 2 2-stars
4. Auburn (84 rated players avg. 3.58 stars): 2 5-stars, 46 4-stars, 35 3-stars, 1 2-star
5. Texas A&M (88 rated players avg. 3.38 stars): 0 5-stars, 35 4-stars, 51 3-stars, 2 2-stars [note: 1 or more rated players is a walk-on not on scholarship]
6. UT (86 rated players avg. 3.36 stars): 2 5-stars, 32 4-stars, 47 3-stars, 5 2-stars [note: 1 or more rated players is a walk-on not on scholarship]
7. UF (74 rated players avg. 3.32 stars): 2 5-stars, 25 4-stars, 43 3-stars, 3 2-stars, 1 1-star
8. USC (79 rated players avg. 3.23 stars): 0 5-stars, 23 4-stars, 51 3-stars, 5 2-stars
9. Ole Miss (80 rated players avg. 3.19 stars): 2 5-stars, 17 4-stars, 55 3-stars, 6 2-stars
10. Mississippi State (88 rated players avg. 3.16 stars): 1 5-star, 19 4-stars, 61 3-stars, 7 2-stars [note: several rated players are walk-ons]
11. Arkansas (92 rated players avg. 3.13 stars): 1 5-star, 17 4-stars, 67 3-stars, 7 2-stars [note: several rated players are walk-ons]
12. UK (78 rated players avg. 3.12 stars): 0 5-stars, 13 4-stars, 63 3-stars, 1 2-star
13. Mizzou (75 rated players avg. 3.08 stars): 1 5-star, 6 4-stars, 66 3-stars, 2 2-stars
14. Vandy (84 rated players avg. 2.99 stars): 0 5-stars, 8 4-stars, 67 3-stars, 9 2-stars

Three tiers there — Alabama and Georgia make up the first, LSU and Auburn are in the second and then there’s everybody else.  And if you think I’m being overly dismissive about this, consider that the spread between Tennessee and Vanderbilt is smaller than that between Georgia and Tennessee.

I know coaching plays a role in things, but if you’re a believer to any extent in the “it’s the Jimmies and Joes, not the Xs and Os” school of football excellence, absent some bizarre turn of events, it’s hard to see how anyone in the East stays with the Dawgs this season.


Filed under Recruiting, SEC Football

Only in America

With Kirby’s pay bump, the average salary of an SEC head football coach is somewhere in the mid-$4 million a year range.

On one level, I get it, I do.  On another, though, it strikes me a bit surreal to read a piece in which someone attempts to split hairs between which coach making that kind of money is overpaid and which one isn’t.  YMMV, of course.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

“The SEC commissioner’s legal background shines through whenever he’s pressed…”

Well, if by “legal background shines through”, you mean rambling nonsensically off-topic until the interviewer gives up, I suppose you have a point.


Filed under It's All Just Made Up And Flagellant, SEC Football, The NCAA

Thursday morning buffet

Grab a plate, campers!


Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, College Football, Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football, Recruiting, SEC Football, See You In Court, Strategery And Mechanics, The NCAA, The NFL Is Your Friend.

The SEC and the first-year effect

One thing I factor into my projections when I compose my SEC preseason prediction post in August is staff turnover.  The odds are, at least in my judgment, that new head coaches and coordinators are going to have their teams progressing through a learning curve that at best will have a steep arc en route to a high plateau and at worst will never really climb at all.  By and large, though, you have to figure that somewhat rocky times are ahead in the short run as systems have to be learned and players have to buy into the changes.

This all passed through my head reading this AP piece about the five (!) new head coaches in the conference.  Moreover, some of these programs, like Arkansas and Florida, are making dramatic changes in coaching philosophies from the prior staffs.  Add to that coordinator changes at Alabama, LSU, Missouri, South Carolina and Vanderbilt (apologies if I’ve left somebody out) and you’ve got a lot of uncertainty being introduced into the system.

No doubt some programs will handle these changeovers better than others — don’t cry for me, Tuscaloosa — but you have to figure some won’t fare so well.  Is SOD, who’s never been an offensive coordinator before, going to transition Missouri’s offense successfully?  Is Will Muschamp really prepared to live with the consequences of a hurry-up offense run by another rookie coordinator?  Does Orgeron have a clue what he wants offensively?  Does Chad Morris have the personnel left over from Bert’s regime to run his kind of offense?  How about Dan Mullen?

If you had to bet on programs to succeed sooner than later with their new coaches, which would you pick?


Filed under SEC Football

And now, junior pro days

For the reader who suggested the other day that it was time for the NCAA to crack down on those kids who were skipping bowl games to protect their health for the NFL draft, I have some bad news:  the NCAA is taking steps to coddle the ungrateful bastids.

Thanks to a proposal from the SEC, the NCAA is paving the way for full-fledged football pro days in which NFL personnel evaluate underclassmen considering entering the next year’s draft.

Earlier this week the NCAA Division I Council adopted proposal 2017-80, legislation from the SEC, which will help up to five underclassmen per school to be evaluated by NFL personnel during a separate pro day each year.

“Our proposal would make it easier to facilitate our student-athletes being observed under the revised NFL rules,” an SEC spokesman said. “Our motivation is to help young people receive the best information possible on which they base decisions about their future.”

The change will allow each school to conduct a the pro day practice and specify that both the college team’s coaches and NFL personnel can be present and conduct the practice and that the practice won’t count towards the college team’s practice limit (i.e., 15 spring practices).

See, if you’re chasing the top recruits (the SEC pushing this proposal should be a giant tell in that regard) with a message that your program will do everything it can to get them ready to play on Sundays, it would be beyond stupid to undercut that by threatening them with punishment if they actually made a decision to look out for their pro futures.

How does it feel to argue in favor of something too dumb for the NCAA to consider?


Filed under SEC Football, The NCAA, The NFL Is Your Friend.