State budget crunch leads to no raises for Texas football staff

Members of the Texas football staff won't be getting raises at least until September -- despite leading the Longhorns to the national championship game for the first time in four seasons.

Texas athletic director DeLoss Dodds told the Austin American-Statesman that members of Coach Mack Brown's staff won't receive any raises to their base salaries because of the economic downturn affecting the university.

Dodds' announcement comes on the heels of Texas Gov. Rick Perry last week ordering the school to submit a plan on how to cut 5 percent of its budget funded by state money.

By comparison, all Texas assistants but coordinators Will Muschamp and Greg Davis pocketed salary bumps of 3 to 4 percent after last season. Muschamp's salary was nearly doubled when he was promoted to head coach-designate and Davis received an increase of 9 percent last season.

All Texas coaches will receive performance bonuses for team achievements during their 13-1 2009 season, which was capped with a 37-21 loss to Alabama in the BCS title game.

Playing in a Bowl Championship Series game will garner an assistant a one-time payment of 9 percent of his salary. The assistants also received a bonus between $3,000 and $5,000 for winning the Big 12 Conference title.

But the no-raises edict is significant on a couple of fronts.

First, Texas football is the most profitable college sports entity in the nation. Forbes Magazine ranked the Longhornfootball program last month as No. 1 among all college sports properties with a team value of $119 million and a profit in 2008 of $59 million.

It's also coming on the heels of a decision made last month by the Texas System Board of Regents, which amended Brown's contract to allow for a one-time $2 million retention bonus to be paid annually.

That decision was roundly criticized by members of the Texas faculty facing the budget cuts. But it has boosted Brown to the position as the highest-paid coach in the nation with an annual salary of $5 million.

That largess apparently won't extend to the Texas assistant coaches this season in terms of contract raises.

But don't necessarily feel sorry for them.

Most Texas coaches are already at the top -- or near it -- in comparisons with other assistant coaches around the nation.