Pac-12 coaches in the poorhouse

November, 16, 2011
11/16/11
6:46
PM ET
USA Today has published its annual list of college football coaching salaries, and the Pac-12 stacks up like this.

Chip Kelly, Oregon, $2,800,000
Jeff Tedford, California, $2,300,000
Steve Sarkisian, Washington, $2,250,000
Kyle Whittingham, Utah, $1,700,000
Dennis Erickson, Arizona State, $1,503,000
Mike Stoops, Arizona, $1,465,000
Mike Riley, Oregon State, $1,313,471
Rick Neuheisel, UCLA, $1,285,000
Jon Embree, Colorado, $725,000
Paul Wulff, Washington State, $600,050

Obviously, Mike Stoops has been fired, and USC coach Lane Kiffin is suspected to be at the top of this list, but USC as a private school doesn't reveal salary information. Nor does Stanford.

A job that pays between $2.8 million and $600,000 is good work, particularly in tough times. So if my pointing out how poorly Pac-12 coaches are paid is going to bother you, stop reading.

Pac-12 coaches are paid poorly.

Six SEC coaches make more than any Pac-12 coach with a published salary. The lowest-paid SEC coach, Kentucky's Joker Phillips, would rank fourth here. Ten SEC coaches are paid more than California's Jeff Tedford, who is No. 2 on the Pac-12 list (No. 3 if you include Kiffin).

Houston Nutt made $2.7 million at Ole Miss, just $100,000 less than Chip Kelly at Oregon. Kelly would rank eighth if Oregon were in the SEC.

Or how about this angle: Tedford and Tennessee's Derek Dooley both make $2.3 million. Or do they?

If Dooley were going to move from Knoxville to San Francisco, he'd need to get paid $4.2 million in order to maintain his current standard of living.

And if Tedford went the other way, he'd only need to make $1.255 million to keep pace in Knoxville.

Let's go less extreme. Say Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne wanted to hire Dan Mullen away from Mississippi State -- having hired Mullen while the Bulldogs AD. He'd have to pay him $2.735 million to match Mullen's $2.5 million salary in Starkville (I used nearby Tupelo because the cost of living calculator didn't have Starkville).

Yes, the coach at Mississippi State makes more than 10 of 12 Pac-12 coaches.

Of course, if you really want to see me ranting, wait until USA Today publishes the assistant-coach salaries.

Ted Miller | email

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