It’s out of hand.....

The money being dished out to football and basketball coaches. Not to mention the “Arms Race” in facilities. At some point it’s going to catch up with those pulling it in and dishing it out - at least in this old dudes opinion. The money is there today with the economy going great guns and big donors cashing in on the huge Bull market. The money is there from TV with the huge contracts that have been agreed on with the big sports networks. And I understand the free market concept well and have benefited from it.

And I could go into another rant about the “Arms Race” in professional and college stadiums across the nation. For example Atlanta who had two wonderful stadiums (baseball & football) that were replaced this past year. And at the cost of the taxpayer because of bonds that were (I believe) tax exempt. What have we become?

None of that makes it right. And this comes from a very conservative dude. Offering Gus 50 million for 7 years is unbelieveable. But that is the market.

What I wonder is when/if the economy changes or TV revenue drops significantly. ESPN is already hurting financially? Hopefully that will not happen but if it does what gives? Who suffers? I just hope it’s not students at these institutions that are hurt.

No one loves college sports more than me. And I believe we are fortunate that Gus played us and stayed at AU. I’d rather pay an up and coming coach a more reasonable salary and roll the dice that he’s the real deal. But that just me. End of rant.

Because athletic departments are tax-exempt, they need to spend the money they generate. The easiest way to do that is to build and increase salaries.

It will change at some point. It happens every time unrealistic amounts are paid, even though it was the norm. Look at the automobile pensions that were agreed that almost sunk US makers. Government pensions in some states are causing near bankruptcy conditions. The NFL is headed there with attendance down and TV networks hurting. College football is setting itself up for it as well. The tax exemptions on huge amounts of money will get attention eventually and the TV networks issue will affect colleges as well.

That is interesting. I assumed that a lot of the HC salary was from the Razorback Foundation. Are they an arm of the University?

The foundation is a private fundraising arm of the athletic department.

If they have so much money they have to look for ways to spend it they could lower ticket prices to relieve the burden. That would also increase attendance and generate more enthusiasm for the Razorbacks among those who cannot afford to be big donors and sit in sky boxes.

Arkansas has lowered ticket prices the past two years. Look at the lowest cost to get into a football and basketball game two years ago compared to now. The lower-level prices have not changed because there is a demand for those seats, but the upper-level prices have decreased at both venues, as well as for the games in Little Rock. That doesn’t take into account the various promotions that have offered tickets to marquee games at lower prices.

I don’t think there is a surplus of funds. When you look at paying $50 million for Gus, that’s because a few (or one) boosters thinks that coach is worth that. I’m not sure that same person (or persons) would pay it for a different coach.

I think some of the other coaches in play are going to be paid in similar fashion to what Bret Bielema was paid.

Couldn’t agree more. I’m ready for the sports bubble to burst. This whole sharade depends on TV money and tax excemptions.

I’m to the point that I follow the Hogs out of habit as much as desire. The whole thing seems grotesque, wasteful, and disingenuous. However, the big schools (i.e. P5) get a lot of marketing benefits. The smaller schools are a different matter.

The student athletic fees charged at UCA, ASU, UALR, etc. to fund D1 sports, where the market does not demand D1 level competition, are especially troublesome. Some schools charge $20/credit hour while others charge $18. You have to complete 120 hours to earn a 4 year college degree in Arkansas. If you finance your entire college education, pay $18/hr in athletic fees, and take the minimum number hours possible, you will graduate with $2,160 in athletic fee debt alone. At $20/hr it’s $2,400 in debt.

Student athletic fees indicate the market is not willing to pay for your product at the price you need to charge to break even. Putting the price of athletics on students (and the government entities that give them scholarships) is really pretty disgraceful.