Cap on college coaches' pay?

The chancellor at Wisconsin told a U.S. Senate committee Tuesday she would be happy to discuss that, which would require an exemption to antitrust law. The purpose of the hearing was to discuss whether a federal law is needed to guide how college athletes are compensated for their names, likenesses and images. The NCAA has asked Congress to get involved rather than have 50 state legislatures passing 50 different laws to govern NLI payments.

I think it is past due to cap several things in collegiate sports.

I’m a free market advocate, I don’t like caps on anyone’s earning potential.


You’re also a taxpayer. Does it bother you that the two highest paid employees of the state of Arkansas are Sam Pittman, Eric Musselman, by a large margin, third place is Dave Van Horn and fourth place is Blake Anderson at ASWho? Which is true in most states, although there are a couple that some doctor at the state medical school is the highest paid.

In a free market there would be no limit to the number of scholarships for instance.
Collegiate sports is not a free market.

There would also be no limits on what a college athlete could be paid, which would cause numerous heads to explode on this board.

At my age, I appreciate the vision Grantland Rice had but that disappeared even before I was born.

Not sure when you were born but the advent of athletic scholarships in the 1950s certainly went counter to what old Grantland was advocating,

As a practical matter, it’s really hard for the NCAA to argue for restrictions on athlete compensation when Nick Saban, John Calipari and Mike Kryzyzewski are making what they’re making. And when, per Matt’s post yesterday, the SEC will soon be distributing $80 million per year per school in TV money. Yesterday’s hearing was regarding the NCAA desire for federal “guardrails”, which can be defined as exactly that – a restriction on compensation, albeit more than they’re getting now.

Really, as a practical matter, even most pro sports don’t have a free market. No one can come in and offer Patrick Mahomes $60 million a year to leave Kansas City, or LeBron $50 million a year to leave the Lakers, Even MLB, with no salary cap, has the luxury tax. Really the only free market is in world soccer, where someone could throw enough money at Barcelona and Lionel Messi to pry him out of Nou Camp. But even that would be limited by Financial Fair Play among European clubs.

I agree and the owners of the pro teams get taxpayers to assist often. I like the owner of the Falcons for instance but the billionaire got taxpayers to pay a lot of his new stadium through road construction sewer lines etc. Then he gets a sponsor and ends up getting is billion dollar site for a whole lot less of his money.

You are correct, but their status as highest-paid state employee is a bit misleading. All of those coaches have a line-item maximum they are paid by their employer, and the majority of their salaries are covered by donations to their athletic foundations. On the Fayetteville campus alone there are 21 non-athletics employees and three employees in athletics whose line-item maximums are greater than the line item for the head football or basketball coaches.

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Yep, you’re right, but this is all about optics. The vast majority of Sam’s and Muss’ and DVH’s salaries aren’t coming out of taxpayer pockets, but they’re still public employees. Same with HY who is also up there on the state employee list. By the way, the same also applies to those medical school professors, who are bringing in research money as well as billing for their professional services.

I remember when Bowden Wyatt was leaving for Tn, the state law did not allow him to get more salary than the President of the school. I remember fans put up enough money to buy him a new car but he was going back to is former school anyway.

I assume the foundations did not exist then.

Correct. The Razorback Scholarship Fund was created in the early 1970s while George Cole was the AD. It became the RF in 1988.

I’m against salary caps of any sort. You are worth what someone will pay you.

Capping a salary is antithetical to the American Dream.

Truer words have never been typed.

Who needs the truth when the “optics” are much more salacious.

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One of the issues with the ridiculous salaries for coaches is that they are do not fall clearly under a public or private domain. A professor at a state university is clearly under the public domain. A coach, however, is another matter. He is what I term a quasi-public employee. He is sort of like a utility company. Both do need to be regulated in some form or fashion.

I am for a free market in the private sector, but this issue is clearly not just a private sector issue.

I have a problem with success of teams being based on what team can afford to be the highest bidder for a coach. The wealthy teams get richer while the others struggle to compete. Good coaches hold college teams hostage, including these ridiculous buyouts - whether they perform or not. Pro sports seems to have fairly addressed salary caps among their teams & no objections to colleges doing the same with coaches.

Free market all the way. Keep congress out of coaches salaries.


What about the players compensation then?

Two different things here. First, one is talking about legistlative restrictions. The other is an agreement among teams in a league to limit pay (salary cap) but they also have a player’s union that is part of the process. When the government starts legislating limits of payment, I have a problem with that.