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Louis
03-27-2012, 01:17 AM
So, are these universities institutions of higher learning, or are they commercial enterprises in the CFL (College Football League) who happen to do a little teaching on the side as they build their fan base?

Alabama extends Saban's deal, boosts pay

Article by: JOHN ZENOR
Associated Press
March 26, 2012 - 8:38 PM

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Alabama coach Nick Saban said he received overtures for other jobs after claiming the second national title in three years. Instead of bolting, he has received a raise and contract extension worth $5.62 million a year that he said represents his intention to finish his career in Tuscaloosa.

"From my standpoint, the acceptance of this extension represents our commitment ... to the University of Alabama for the rest of our career," Saban said. "We made that decision after the season when other people were interested."

The university's board of trustees approved a two-year extension for Saban on Monday that will run through Jan. 31, 2020. He'll receive $5.32 million in 2012 with a $50,000 raise next year and $100,000 annually after that.

Under the deal, he'll make $5.97 million in 2019.

Saban will make nearly $45 million over eight years in base salary ($245,000) and what Alabama calls "talent fees." The contract represents a $500,000 raise in talent fees plus longevity pay and the built-in raises.

The former Miami Dolphins coach declined to say who made the overtures.

"It doesn't really matter," Saban said. "We wanted to stay at Alabama. We're staying at Alabama and we're not interested in going anyplace else. We weren't interested in going anyplace else at the end of the season, so it really doesn't matter."

Saban remains among college football's highest paid coaches, along with Mack Brown of Texas ($5.2 million) and Oklahoma's Bob Stoops ($4.875 million), dwarfing the eye-catching eight-year, $32 million deal he received after leaving the Miami Dolphins.

He made at least $5.170 million last year in salary, talent fee and bonuses, including $400,000 for winning the national title. The new deal represents a $500,000 raise to his talent fee, plus longevity pay, which totals $5 million over the duration, and a $5 million life insurance policy.

The Tide is 48-6 over the past four seasons. Saban has restored the program to the point that a 10-3 title follow-up in 2010 was viewed as a big disappointment. He has had Alabama at its best in the biggest games, particularly the powerhouse defense.

The Tide claimed the 2009 title with a 37-21 win over Texas and blanked LSU 21-0 in New Orleans for the national championship two years later. Before his arrival, Alabama hadn't won a national title since the 1992 season.

The deal states that if he's fired without cause he gets the lesser amount between four years of pay or the balance of his contract. Saban said he "really wasn't involved in the negotiations."

"To me, this all happened a long time ago right after the (LSU) game," said Saban, whose agent is Jimmy Sexton. "I really think they sort of decide what they want to do and you decide if it's good enough and it's certainly good enough for me."

His coaching staff was rewarded, too.

The trustees' compensation committee also approved a $100,000 raise for defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, up to $950,000. New offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier will make $590,000. Both have three-year deals.

Smart is the only assistant coach who doesn't owe a 20 percent buyout if he leaves early, but will owe $72,000 if he leaves for any position other than head coach. He also got a $100,000 raise in January 2011.

New outside linebackers coach Lance Thompson will make $355,000 in a two-year deal. The assistant coaches will receive 4 percent bonuses for an appearance in the SEC championship game, 8 percent for a bowl game, 12 percent for one of the SEC's top 5 bowl tie-ins and 16 percent for a BCS game.

"I think there's a very competitive market out there when it comes to assistant coaches," Saban said. "I think it's imperative that we keep continuity and that we had the opportunity to be competitive salary-wise with other schools who are trying to hire our coaches.

"It doesn't really matter what my opinion is or anyone else's opinion. The market is what it is, and if we're not willing to pay that to the best people that we have, they're not going to be here."

rustychisel
03-27-2012, 01:42 AM
maybe he's the Greg LeMond of his profession, but broadly speaking I agree with your point.

I'm pleased this is not a thread about universal health care...

vqdriver
03-27-2012, 01:48 AM
I think the second choice is becoming more and more widespread. Kinda tough tough to argue when tv revenue is as high as it's getting. There will be a tipping point tho. And at the rate this going I'm guessing it'll be before 2020

Chance
03-27-2012, 06:52 AM
Don't see the insanity you refer to. It's a free market and decision makers think he is worth that much and brings back to Bama more than that, otherwise they wouldn't pay them that much.

Anyway, how is that different than a movie star getting that much for just one movie which requires just a few months work, or a pro athelete that earns more than that by a mile? Rare talent is rare whether it's playing ball or coaching it.

Aaron O
03-27-2012, 07:04 AM
+1...they are semi-pro athletes in a minor league system. Stop the fantasy, stop wasting spots in class rooms and pay them as athletes.

FlashUNC
03-27-2012, 08:23 AM
I find it reprehensible a multi-billion sports league is built essentially on the backs of free labor.

The players need to share in the revenue they generate.

rwsaunders
03-27-2012, 08:24 AM
+1...they are semi-pro athletes in a minor league system. Stop the fantasy, stop wasting spots in class rooms and pay them as athletes.

Better yet, charge the NBA and the NFL for the free minor league training.

ClutchCargo
03-27-2012, 08:30 AM
I find it reprehensible a multi-billion sports league is built essentially on the backs of free labor.

The players need to share in the revenue they generate.

Reprehensible? Players are serving an apprenticeship, is all.

craptacular
03-27-2012, 08:37 AM
My question is always how is this any different than a fine arts program? Musicians and actors can get scholarships, and get paid to perform in plays/concerts while still in school and not lose their scholarships. When I was in college, I couldn't work a job other than coaching some of our team's summer camps due to time constraints from practice and games. The school made money off of me, just like it is making a ton of money off of the athletes and coaches you just cited.

Spin71
03-27-2012, 09:03 AM
I'm someone who went to a major college I could never had afforded without playing Lax. I didn't feel exploited. I felt blessed to get a free education while doing something I loved. Higher learning is a business no matter how you cut it. The dollars made from these sports go to improving the universities, not just lining people pockets.

FlashUNC
03-27-2012, 09:09 AM
Reprehensible? Players are serving an apprenticeship, is all.

Apprenticeship for what? The vast bulk of them will never turn pro. And the university holds them to year-to-year athletic scholarships.

oldpotatoe
03-27-2012, 09:10 AM
+1...they are semi-pro athletes in a minor league system. Stop the fantasy, stop wasting spots in class rooms and pay them as athletes.

What he said. Have them major in 'football' or 'basketball', to call them 'student athletes' is laughable. If the 'student-athlete' wants to major in a real subject, let him.

Spin71
03-27-2012, 09:11 AM
The vast bulk of them will never turn pro.

The bulk of them either couldn't get into college or afford it without playing. It's a give and take.

Spin71
03-27-2012, 09:14 AM
to call them 'student athletes' is laughable.

More student athletes take advantage of their education than you think. People focus on the few that are there just to play for a few years and turn pro.

FlashUNC
03-27-2012, 09:14 AM
The bulk of them either couldn't get into college or afford it without playing. It's a give and take.

So the college education offsets things like the NCAA getting $11 billion in revenue through the TV deal to broadcast March Madness over the next 14 years?

There is a ton of money being made off the backs of these "student athletes," and I don't see how "well, we got these kids to go to college" serves as justification for what is still exploitation.

kenmetzger
03-27-2012, 09:38 AM
Well, I think the "student athletes" should be put into three categories:
-Players that would prefer to be playing professional if they were not required to be older by the NFL or NBA. These players are not students, but almost forced labor.
-Players hoping (or waiting) to become professionals usually in basketball, football, or baseball. I would think just about all starters for Alabama football would be in the first two categories.
-Players that are playing in large part due to the scholarships or for the love of the sport. This would be the rest with a lot of swimmers, lax, field hockey, etc.

I think there needs to be a separation of big sports from the college. Pretty much a professional team paid by the university, conference, and NCAA. A player can choose a scholarship and education or money. Donors would not be able to get tax refunds by giving to the booster clubs that support a money making enterprise as they do now (this drives me crazy).

djg
03-27-2012, 02:28 PM
Don't see the insanity you refer to. It's a free market and decision makers think he is worth that much and brings back to Bama more than that, otherwise they wouldn't pay them that much.

Anyway, how is that different than a movie star getting that much for just one movie which requires just a few months work, or a pro athelete that earns more than that by a mile? Rare talent is rare whether it's playing ball or coaching it.

Which market is free? The labor market for football coaches?

I'm no authority on Alabama state law, but I reckon that the State of Alabama can operate a football team or a bake sale if it so chooses -- to first approximation, anything that does not put them directly at odds with federal law, including the Constitution of the United States. My guess is that Louis never meant to suggest otherwise, although he might clear that up for himself if he cares to.

That may, however, be largely irrelevant to the question whether a given state institution (or, for that matter, a private not-for-private educational institution) should participate in a given type of business venture. There's the negative bit -- the State of Alabama ought not to vioate the First Amendment or the Thirteenth, sure, there's that minimal bit of negative guidance, but what should it do?

How about the Alabama State Police getting into the business of selling controlled substances? You know, lawfully, pursuant to valid prescriptions to be filed by duly licensed pharmacist/troopers, in a manner consistent with all FDA/DEA/SAMSHA and state regulations? If this were a big money maker, would that make it a good thing, or cause people to worry about corruption of the mission of the institution of the state police?

I don't know what's worth it to the university, or the state of Alabama, and it's not my call, but my friend Charlie has an interesting book on the topic of big time college sports (from an economist's perspective): Charles T. Clotfelter. Big-Time Sports in American Universities. Cambridge University Press, 2011.

bikerboy337
03-27-2012, 02:51 PM
where the athletes are truly student athletes... actually, most are... there are a few "big" programs where the athletes are truly student athletes in the big sports...

I went to Boston College and one brother went to Notre Dame, from a football standpoint, they both graduate over 95% of their students... Navy, Stanford, Duke, etc. have great academic programs as well... now none of those teams have a consistent shot at a national title...

On the other hand, my other brother went to Alabama... so we've got both sides in our family...

Then again, BC hockey is a pipeline to the NHL... right now we have 9 NHL draft picks playing for our team (they're drafted, but still play college hockey)... but, in hockey, most of the players finish school...

anyways, this is an age old debate... at the big schools, they're athletes first, students second... there should be some sort of compensation, but there are a host of issues in working that out... the NCAA tried a bit this year, but didn't go anywhere with it... in the end, its all about the $$$$... the NCAA has a ton at stake and wont do anything that will hurt its bottom line... same for the schools...

Chief
03-27-2012, 06:03 PM
I think the salaries of major university football/basketball coaches, including assistant coaches, are outrageous. While I don't necessarily support paying the "student athletes," I would like to offer some perspective. I believe NCAA I football teams are limited to 85 scholarship players. To make the arithmetic simple assume there are 100 scholarship players. If one million dollars of the head coach's salary was divided between those 100 players, each would get $10,000 and now we are talking real money. Assuming there are 15 basketball players on the team, it would only cost the head coach $150,000--less than 10% of some of the coach's salaries. Who is being exploited here? Call it what you want, but I see these programs at major universities as nothing more than minor league training programs for the majors who should be chipping in on supporting the programs as the MLB does with its minor league teams.