01 March, 2011

Forbes Magazine reveal the Top Five salaries of US sports coaches for year ended 31st December 2010: With thanks to Carl Andrews of Universityreviewsonline.com

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NICK SADAN:  U.S. university's highest earning Head Coach
While it is unusual for me to feature non-Irish related stories on this site; exceptions can be made.
Major (U.S.) college sports have become big business and top College coaches (unlike top college athletes) have become big hitters and very wealthy men to boot. The two highest revenued American college sports are (American) football and basketball. These sports also attract the highest paid coaches. College coaches' salaries are now eclipsing those of professional coaches, indicating just how big college athletics has become. Are the coaches worth the vast sums that they are paid? That is for you to you to decide. Here is a list of the
Top 10 Coaches' Salaries in U.S. Universities:*

1st. Nick Sadan, Alabama: Annual Salary: US$6,087,345:
Nobody takes their football more seriously than Alabamans, as evidenced by the dollar amounts tossed around during the last several months involving Auburn, its coaching staff, Cam Newton, and Saban. Amid his rival's controversial national championship run, Saban quietly became the first coach in college sports to receive a yearly salary in excess $6 million, making him the fourth highest paid football coach on any level — behind the New England Patriots' Bill Belichick, Washington Redskins' Mike Shanahan and Seattle Seahawks' Pete Carroll. The only other coach outside of football who definitely earns more than Saban is Phil Jackson of the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers, who has won more championships, 11, than any other coach in professional sports history.

Brown is laughing all the way to the bank
2nd. Mack Brown, Texas: Annual Salary: US$5,161,500
The second highest paid coach in college football guided his team to 5-7 record in 2010, an abysmal result for a program with an abundance of inherent advantages. Brown isn't considered a masterful gameday tactician like Saban, and his salary is more of a reflection of his contributions to the University of Texas. For example, when he inked his latest deal in 2009, UT President William Powers Jr. defended it by claiming that the athletic program Brown has provided $6.6 million for the university's academic programs. His presence has also helped bring forth the creation of the Longhorn Network, which will be developed and operated by ESPN and pay UT $300 million over 20 years. Brown is truly a "CEO coach."

Hands up for Bob Stoops' bank account
3rd. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma: Annual Salary: US$4,767,500
 After winning the Fiesta Bowl and finishing in the top 10, Stoops received a nice incentive-based $192,500 raise to go along with his automatic raise of $200,000 that took effect on the first of the year. The University of Oklahoma athletic department, which claims to be completely self-sustaining, defended the contract by highlighting the publicity and fundraising dollars he has added during his time as the head coach. The immense revenue that comes from football has enabled the athletic department to contribute to the schools academic programmes.

Coach K:   Duke University
4th. Mike Krzyzewki, Duke: Annual Salary: US$4,095,099:
Coach K is a living legend who certainly deserves to be the highest paid coach in college basketball. In 2010, he won his 12th ACC championship, appeared in his 11th Final Four and won his fourth national championship. Even though his teams were viewed as underperforming during the few seasons prior to last, his salary has almost tripled in the time period. Duke, a private university ranked among the nation's best, views Krzyzewski as not only the face of its basketball program, but a main spokesperson for the university.

Gorgui Dieng and Rick Pitino (right above)
5th. Rick Pitino, Louisvile: Annual Salary: U$4,073,093: 
Prior to signing a contract extension through the 2016-17 season in 2010, rumors were swirling that Pitino was planning to leave the program. As was the case during his stints as the head coach at Providence and Kentucky, multiple NBA teams were soliciting his services. Pitino was also embroiled in a scandal in which he was accused of rape by a woman with whom he had an affair. Supported by the University of Louisville, he issued an apology for the affair, and the woman was eventually found guilty of extortion. With the overtures and drama mostly gone, he has resettled into his position and the Cards are preparing to enter their eighth NCAA tournament appearance in 10 seasons under Pitino.

* Some figures are exact; others are rounded, depending on the source.
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