Football coaches' salaries may not pay off on the field

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  • Will-be-til-I-die Meridian, ID
    Dec. 12, 2010 9:55 a.m.

    It is a simple business decision. If a coach can bring in more than their salary, they are worth it. If they can't, fire them and hire someone who can.

    How much they make is irrelevant, especially when comparing them to university presidents. It is only relevant when you compare it to what they add to the program. It always takes time to figure out whether a coach is going to pay off or not.

    I can guarantee one thing though, the coaches and the university presidents both understand the economics of the situation better than the author of this article.

  • dhsalum Saint George, UT
    Dec. 11, 2010 3:10 p.m.

    Fresnogirl, you're right that those types of people should get paid. But what it comes down to many people get furious that they have to pay $50 to visit a doctor, but would happily pay the same amount or more multiple times a year to see football games.

  • morpunkt Glendora, CA
    Dec. 11, 2010 7:29 a.m.

    After perusing Google, I guess the best "unconfirmed" estimate of Bronco Mendenhall's salary is approximately $900,000/year.

  • AK Cougar Palmer, AK
    Dec. 9, 2010 10:41 p.m.

    If Gordon Gee was a Football Coach he would be soon be on the unemployment list. He hasn't a clue what football is about, else he would accept BSU's challenge for Ohios State to play them anytime, anywhere.

    An interesting comparison would be what University Presidents salary is in comparison to the Football Coach of the same University.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    Dec. 9, 2010 7:57 p.m.

    Thanks for the lesson on basic economics, Osgrath. I was merely responding to IDC's assumption that these are very special Public Employees. "These are gifted men in high profile positions." I guess we should treasure them as precious geniuses.

    I just find his glowing comments too funny. I mean it's not like we entrust them with life and death.

  • Osgrath Provo, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 6:08 p.m.

    Fresno Girl, people get paid a salary according to perceived value. A large group of people value the entertainment that football brings. The only people that value the services of a neuro-surgeon are those operated on and their families.

    This is definitely not about an objective analysis of what is truly more valuable, and it is not about amount of schooling and preparation for the work. If everything were decided on an objective basis, school teachers would be paid for the positive impact the good ones make on hundreds of kids, preparing them for life. The neuro-surgeon saves a few lives here and there, a good high school teacher molds hundreds of lives a year. Which is more valuable?

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    Dec. 9, 2010 4:28 p.m.


    According to Wikianswers: To become a neurosurgeon, you must complete 4 years of college, 4 years of medical school and 1 year of surgery internship followed by 5-7 years of neurosurgery residency. During these 14+ years of post-secondary training, you get paid nothing until residency at which point you will make roughly $45K/year with moderate yearly increases. After residency has been completed, a neurosurgeon makes on average $350-500K/year.

    Are these men really more talented than the men who operate on brains for a living?

  • conservative scientist Lindon, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 4:25 p.m.

    Gordon Gee seems to think himself an expert on football. He should quit his current job and become a coach

  • IDC Boise, ID
    Dec. 9, 2010 12:56 p.m.

    These are gifted men in high profile positions. I bet most of these guys would do well in whatever field they chose. They also work very hard and put in long hours.

  • GoodGuyGary Houston, TX
    Dec. 9, 2010 12:31 p.m.

    "Yet Locksley's $750,00 salary is equal to Troy Calhoun at Air Force and more than bowl-bound San Diego State coach Brady Hoke ($675,000), whose standard of living costs are significantly higher."

    When you get paid over half million a year, would you still care "standard of living costs"?

  • TAGZZ SLC, Utah
    Dec. 9, 2010 12:04 p.m.

    It is funny to see coaches with a horrible team making buku bucks compared to Coaches who have excellent programs... I think Utah and BYU need to pay there coaches more... Steve Sarkisian makes 1.8 million and Coach Whitt only 1.1 mill... That should change immediately!!

  • yarrlydarb Ogden, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 11:20 a.m.

    The big bucks for coaches indirectly but eventually comes out of the fans' pockets, who'd rather be entertained than educated.

  • ST Layton, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 10:07 a.m.

    It's basic economics- supply and demand under a free market society ... would you rather live in a state imposed market society?

  • cowboy99 South Jordan, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 10:01 a.m.

    Howard S. | 8:26 a.m. Dec. 9, 2010
    Taylorsville, UT

    No it's just that USA today couldn't get that info off of private schools so Notre Dame and Boston College and etc are N/A too.

  • Howard S. Taylorsville, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 8:26 a.m.

    No mention of Bronco Mendenhall's salary?

    Guess Dick couldn't get it approved by the BYU media police.

  • SJ Bobkins Gilbert, AZ
    Dec. 9, 2010 2:38 a.m.

    "Ohio State president Gordon Gee, a former University of Utah student and BYU law professor, is the highest-paid public university president in the U.S. with a base salary of $802,125 and total compensation package of $1.6 million. But his football coach, Jim Tressel, makes twice as much ($3.5 million) in the land of bow ties and vests"

    Tressel had a better year and 100,000 people don't pay from $45 to $8,000 to see Gee work for three hours. Its simple economics, you don't pay a lot of money if you don't have to, and the demand for a good football coach far exceeds the supply. Locksley won't be getting $750,000 for much longer and in my humble opinion never will again.

  • fresnogirl Fresno, CA
    Dec. 9, 2010 12:12 a.m.

    How lame it must be to have your salaries openly compared in the newspaper, but WOW that's a lotta dough! Even the lower end.

  • RaininTime Orem, UT
    Dec. 9, 2010 12:08 a.m.

    What this says is that society values sports far more than education, but I think we have all sort of just accepted that.

    "Sin is a vice of such hideous means that at first to be seen, we first shun, then forget, as it seems commonplace, but alas embrace." Poe