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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Pac-12 players’ salaries: Whittingham’s new deal and our look at the most overpaid (and underpaid) coaches

As part of an ongoing effort, Commissioner George Klyavkoff is trying to convince Pac-12 presidents and chancellors that investing in football can benefit athletic departments and the campus community.

“Historically, I don’t think we have made a strong case for ROI in football,” Klyavkoff told the hotline after the 2021 season. “I won’t take the opportunity to talk to my 12 bosses without talking about it.”

Klyavkov doesn’t have to worry about Utah’s Taylor Randall. The freshman president clearly believes in the huge ROI of football.

Last week, Utah announced a major contract extension for coach Kyle Whittingham, who will receive $41 million over the next six years, culminating in an $8 million guarantee for the 2027 season.

The renegotiated contract, signed months after the school’s first Rose Bowl appearance, makes Whittingham the highest paid public school coach in the Pac-12.

But perhaps the most interesting aspect of the deal is the university’s willingness to compensate Whittingham if a number of facility projects are not completed on time.

According to USA Today, which closely monitors coaching contracts at major college football:

“Introducing contractual obligations on facilities, backed by $400,000 in financial penalties, is even more unusual.

“Two fixes are relatively cosmetic: new graphics and carpeting for the football building. The other includes a nearly $62 million indoor practice facility for the team, which currently shares an indoor facility with other Utah teams and local recreation programs…

“Construction of the new facility should start by July 1, 2023, and the university should be occupied by December 31, 2024. If any deadline is missed, Whittingham must be paid $100,000 within 60 days.”

In other words, the Utahs are hooked on resource investment, a move that appears to be more likely in the Big Ten or SEC than in the Pac-12.

Providing space “helps the organization focus on certain aspects, especially as you go through the approval processes that your overall leadership needs,” Utah athletic director Mark Harlan told USA Today.

Harlan’s plan would not have been possible without the support of Randall, who was named president last summer after a long tenure as dean of the business school.

Randall is a Utah graduate and has seen success in football have a huge impact on campus – first with Urban Meyer, then with Whittingham and moving to the Pac-12.

As we point out below, the renegotiated contract turns Whittingham’s guaranteed compensation into thin air within the conference.

(Salary data is from university disclosures or published reports. USC and Stanford are not required to release contracts.)

Lincoln Riley of USC

Signed through: N/A

Average annual salary: no data

Commentary: Riley’s deal, which will eventually appear on public USC tax filings, is expected to be worth $100 million over 10 years. If the Trojans make the playoffs this or next season, he could seem like a bargain.

David Shaw from Stanford

Signed through: N/A

Average annual salary: no data

Commentary: The three-time conference champion is believed to be earning between $6 million and $7 million a year in guaranteed compensation. Despite Stanford’s recent downturn, Shaw will only leave when he feels good and ready.

Kyle Whittingham from Utah

Signed through: 2027 season

Average annual salary: $6.83 million.

Comment: If he averages 6.5 conference wins a year and coaches until his new contract expires, Whittingham will retire with 92 Pac-12 wins – third all-time behind UCLA’s Terry Donahue Los Angeles (98) and Don James of Washington (97). .

Dan Lanning from Oregon

Signed through: 2027 season

Average annual salary: $4.85 million.

Commentary: We have long ceased to question Oregon’s commitment to football success. The school wants a national title for Phil Knight, and Phil Knight wants a national title for Phil Knight.

Justin Wilcox of Cal

Signed through: 2027 season

Median annual salary: $4.75 million.

Commentary: Wilcox may be overpaid based on his Berkeley record (26-28), but clearly underpaid given all the administrative and bureaucratic hurdles he faces, especially in the last two years.

Chip Kelly of UCLA

Signed through: 2025 season

Median annual salary: $4.75 million.

Commentary: Kelly’s recently signed extension limits UCLA’s financial liability if the momentum fades over the next two seasons – a perfectly plausible scenario given the events in the city.

Jonathan Smith from Oregon

Signed through: 2027 season

Median annual salary: $3.77 million.

Commentary: The Hotline supercomputer calculated coach salaries, wins, recruiting rankings and university resources and determined that Smith, even with his new contract, is one of the best Pac-12 deals.

Herm Edwards of Arizona

Signed through: 2024 season

Average annual salary: $3.7 million.

Commentary: The Hotline supercomputer calculated coaches’ salaries, wins, recruiting ratings and NCAA investigations and determined that Edwards had officially entered the “money stealing” phase of his tenure.

World Nation News Desk
World Nation News Deskhttps://worldnationnews.com/
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