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Coaching pays — and better all the time

On Sports
by: Tribune File Photo At Oregon State University, football coach Mike Riley and his nine returning assistant coaches pull in about $2.8 million total per year.

After reading a recent piece on the escalating athletic budgets at Oregon and Oregon State, where the revenue comes from and so forth, it left me wondering a couple of obvious questions:

What are the salaries of the coaches at both schools? And how do they compare on a national scale?

A little digging resulted in evidence that wasn't surprising.

Oregon is paying its coaches more than Oregon State - and reaping the rewards. But the Ducks aren't spending as much as some of the national powers.

Oregon is paying head football coach Chip Kelly and his nine assistants $4,214,900. Add Athletic Director Rob Mullens and the rest of the UO head coaches (14, with Vin Lananna heading up men's and women's cross country and track) and the total is $8,821,536.

At Oregon State, head football coach Mike Riley and his nine returning assistants made $2,799,348. Figuring new assistants Brent Brennan and Chris Brasfield each in the $120,000 range, that brings the total to somewhere close to $2.75 million.

Add Athletic Director Bob De Carolis and the rest of the OSU head coaches (15, with Kelly Sullivan coaching women's cross country and track) and the total is $5,587,348.

Kelly owns the largest salary by far - a base of $2.4 million, with $885,000 in maximum bonus opportunities. Figures are unavailable, but I'm guessing the Chipster made virtually all of his bonus money last season.

The price of winning has driven up the salary of the man in charge of the Ducks' program. Kelly's predecessor, Mike Bellotti, made $400,000 base in 2001 and $600,000 in 2002. By 2008, Bellotti's final year at the helm, his was punching in at $1.5 million.

Riley's contract calls for $1,151,667 base plus $360,000 in bonus incentives. OSU's veteran coach likely didn't get much bonus off the Beavers' 5-7 campaign last season. Riley, whose contract runs through 2019, has a buyout, but it's an expensive one - $14.49 million.

When Riley first came on in 1997, his base salary was $135,000. His successor, Dennis Erickson, started at $150,000 base in 1999, which had increased to $675,000 in his last season, 2002. Riley's base when he returned in 2003 was $625,000.

UO defensive coordinator Nick Aliotti ($285,000) and veteran D-line coach Steve Greatwood ($245,000) top the assistants' list, with the rest of the coaches in the $148,000 to $230,000 range.

At OSU, veteran D-coordinator Mark Banker ($360,419) is considerably ahead of the rest of the staff, which reaps from $105,000 to $231,000.

The athletic directors at the schools, UO's Mullens ($458,436) and OSU's De Carolis ($419,388), are in the same salary ballpark, though the latter is due for a new, ostensibly more lucrative contract in June.

UO basketball coach Dana Altman makes $1.8 million, almost double that of the man in his seat at OSU, Craig Robinson, at $950,000. Robinson, contracted through 2016, has a buyout at $5.95 million.

During his last season at Oregon, 2008-09, Altman's predecessor, Ernie Kent, was making a base of $1.06 million. Former OSU coach Jay John's base in his last season, 2007-08, was $475,000.

Oregon's other head coaches are making more than their peers at Oregon State with the exception of volleyball's Jim Moore ($160,000 compared to OSU's Taras Liskeyvich at $200,008) and softball's Mike White ($84,800 to OSU's Kirk Walker at $135,000).

On a national scale, Kelly does not rank among the top 10 most-highly paid coaches, who are in the $2.7 million to $6 million range. Kelly ranks ahead of the nine other listed Pac-12 coaches (private schools Stanford and Southern Cal do not provide information and are not included).

In basketball, the starting salary for UO's Altman doesn't rank among the top 10 nationally. But it's higher than that of Washington's Lorenzo Romar, who has been on the job for nine years and has had the Huskies in the NCAA Tournament each of the last three seasons.

OSU's Robinson makes more than Gonzaga's Mark Few and San Diego State's Steve Fisher and is higher than 37 of the 68 coaches who coached their teams into the NCAA Tournament this season.

In today's economy, the salaries of Division I football and basketball coaches seem ludicrous. But college sports are an entertainment industry. You have to spend money to be successful and, hopefully, to make money.

That's been the case at Oregon, where the athletic department budget has doubled since 2005, but the Ducks' national performance has risen almost across the board, as well.

The proliferation of new facilities at both Oregon and Oregon State in recent years is another example. It's keeping up with the Joneses, and providing yourself with the opportunity to recruit quality athletes that result in winning programs to draw fans and …

You get the picture.


COLLEGE ATHLETIC SALARIES

Oregon State

• Bob De Carolis, athletic director, $419,388

• Mike Riley, football, $1,151,667 ($701,667 base, $450,000 media), plus $360,000 maximum bonus

• Mark Banker, defensive coordinator, $360,419

• Bruce Reed, assistant coach, $231,250

• Danny Langsdorf, offensive coordinator, $225,000

• Mike Cavanaugh, assistant coach, $200,004

• Jay Locey, assistant coach, $160,008

• Joe Seumalo, assistant coach, $126,000

• Brent Brennan, assistant coach, $120,000

• Chris Brasfield, assistant coach, $120,000

• Keith Heyward, assistant coach, $105,000

• Craig Robinson, basketball, $950,000 ($240,000 base, $710,000 media), plus $1.1 million maximum bonus

• Pat Casey, baseball, $324,576 ($279,576 base, $45,000 media)

• Taras Liskevych, volleyball, $200,008 ($175,008 base, $25,000 media)

• Scott Rueck, women's basketball, $160,000

• Kirk Walker, women's softball, $135,000

• Tanya Chaplin, gymnastics, $120,000

• Jim Zalesky, wrestling, $110,000

• Steve Simmons, men's soccer, $97,008

• Linus Rhode, women's soccer, $80,004

• Emily Ford, women's crew, $72,000

• Rise Alexander, women's golf, $71,004

• Kelly Sullivan, women's cross country/track and field, $70,008

• Jon Reehoorn, men's golf, $66,000

• Larry Liebowitz, women's swimming, $63,000

• Steve Ford, men's crew, $50,004

Oregon

• Rob Mullens, athletic director, $458,436

• Chip Kelly, football, $2.4 million, plus $885,000 maximum bonus

• Nick Aliotti, defensive coordinator, $285,000

• Steve Greatwood, assistant coach, $245,000

• Mark Helfrich, offensive coordinator, $230,833

• Tom Osborne, assistant coach, $218,600

• Jerry Azzinaro, assistant coach, $183,334

• John Neal, assistant coach, $173,933

• Gary Campbell, assistant coach, $167,600

• Don Pellum, assistant coach, $162,000

• Scott Frost, assistant coach, $148,600

• Dana Altman, men's basketball, $1,800,000, plus $500,000 maximum bonus

• Paul Westhead, women's basketball, $657,200

• George Horton, baseball, $450,000

• Vin Lananna, cross country/track and field $400,000

• Jim Moore, volleyball, $160,000

• Casey Martin, men's golf, $119,800

• Jennifer Beck, women's lacrosse, $93,300

• Tara Erickson, women's soccer, $88,500

• Mike White, women's softball, $84,800

• Ria Scott, women's golf, $84,800

• Nils Schyllander, men's tennis, $80,000

• Paul Reber, women's tennis, $75,000

• Felicia Mulkey, acrobatics and tumbling, $54,800

Football

Top 10 nationally

(2010 season figures from December study by USA Today)

1. Nick Saban, Alabama (SEC), $6 million base, plus $700,000 maximum bonus

2. Mack Brown, Texas, (Big 12), $5.2 million, $850,000

3. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma (Big 12), $4.38 million, $819,500

4. Urban Meyer, Florida (SEC, retired), $4 million, $575,000

5. Jim Tressell, Ohio State (Big Ten), $3.89 million, $450,000

6. Les Miles, LSU (SEC), $3.9 million, $400,000

7. Kirk Ferentz, Iowa (Big Ten), $3.78 million, $1.75 million

8. Mark Richt, Georgia (SEC), $2.94 million, $600,000

9. Jim Grobe, Wake Forest (ACC), $2.94 million, NA

10. Bobby Petrino, Arkansas (SEC), $2.71 million, $475,000

Pac-12 coaches

Chip Kelly, football, $2.4 million, plus $885,000 maximum bonus

Jeff Tedford, Cal, $2.3 million, plus $265,000 maximum bonus

Steve Sarkisian, UW, $1.85 million, plus $1.5 million maximum bonus

Dennis Erickson, ASU, 1.5 million, plus $1.8 million maximum bonus

Mike Riley, football, $1,151,667 ($701,667 base, $450,000 media), plus $360,000 maximum bonus

Mike Stoops, Arizona, $1.39 million, plus $650,000 maximum bonus

Rick Neuheisel, UCLA, $1.28 million, plus $500,000 maximum bonus

Kyle Whittingham, Utah, $1.18 million, plus $485,000 maximum bonus

Jon Embree, Colorado, $761,000, plus $1.2 million maximum bonus

Paul Wulff, WSU, $600,000, plus $220,000 maximum bonus

Other coaches of interest

June Jones, SMU (CUSA), $2.14 million, bonus unavailable

Chris Petersen, Bose State (Mountain West), $1.49 million, plus $145,000 maximum bonus

Doug Martin, Kent State (Mid-American, last among D-I schools), $190,000, plus $91,500 maximum bonus

Basketball

(2010-11 figures from March study by USA Today on coaches of 68 NCAA Tournament teams)

1. Rick Pitino, Louisville (Big East), $7.53 million (including one-time, $3.6 million bonus), plus $575,000 maximum bonus

2. Mike Krzyzewski, Duke (ACC), $4.2 million, bonus unavailable

3. John Calipari, Kentucky (SEC), $3.92 million, plus $850,000 maximum bonus

4. Bill Self, Kansas (Big 12), $3.62 million, plus $425,000 maximum bonus

5. Billy Donovan, Florida, $3.58 million, plus $487,583 maximum bonus

6. Tom Izzo, Michigan State, $3.57 million, plus $350,000 maximum bonus

7. Thad Motta, Ohio State, $2.65 million, plus $320,000 maximum bonus

8. Sean Miller, Arizona, $2.3 million, plus $985,000 maximum bonus

9. Jim Calhoun, Connecticut, $2.3 million, plus $102,083 maximum bonus

10. Rick Barnes, Texas, $2.2 million, plus $765,000 maximum bonus

Pac-12 coaches

Ben Howland, UCLA, $2.01 million, plus $235,000 maximum bonus

Lorenzo Romar, Washington, $1.31 million, plus $415,000 maximum bonus

Other coaches of interest

Mark Few, Gonzaga, $923,000, bonus unavailable

Steve Fisher, San Diego State, $561,000, plus $145,000 maximum bonus

B.J. Hill, Northern Colorado (Big Sky, last among tournament schools), $85,000, plus $25,000 maximum bonus