Thursday, April 18, 2013
Bill Snyder airs discontent with state of CFB
By David Ubben
Bill Snyder is the elder statesman of the Big 12 coaching fraternity at age 73, and every offseason he faces questions about how much longer he'll coach.
On Wednesday, he opened up about the one factor that might bring his career to an end: college football, at least in its current form.
“College athletics, particularly football, has changed dramatically throughout my career,” Snyder said on 610 Sports Radio KCSP, according to a transcript from Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com. “I think it's in a bad place right now. It's in a bad place for a variety of reasons. We've allowed it to become money driven. We've allowed it to become TV driven. We've allowed athletic programs or football programs to mean more to a university than what the university is really supposed to be all about.”
Fair points all around, and you need to look no further than recent realignment for evidence of that. TV is the reason why Rutgers somehow got an invitation to the Big Ten. Snyder watched the old Big Eight drastically change into the new Big 12 and then less than two years later, the league crumble with two of K-State's rivals -- Nebraska and Missouri -- leaving for other conferences.
Snyder certainly raised a few eyebrows when he confirmed that those changes made him consider if he wants to be coaching much longer, and raised a few more when he dropped this choice quote:
“I can only speak personally,” Snyder said. “I'm grossly overpaid for what I do. That's part of what creates the issue.”
I actually disagree wholeheartedly with the always-humble Snyder here. Coaches are responsible for everything that takes place on the football field, and their salaries are a reward for what takes place on those fields. You might make the case for some younger, less accomplished coaches as being underpaid, but what Snyder has done for Kansas State and the community of Manhattan far outweighs his modest $2.75 million salary, up from 2.2 million after signing a new deal in January. That $2.75 million ranks barely inside the top 20 nationally, which is significantly below where I'd rank his actual impact and coaching talent.
It's an interesting complaint from Snyder, who knows the landscape as well as anyone.
There might not be a soul (Snyder's included) who knows how long he'll coach, but I know one thing for sure: The game will be worse off when he stops.