The University of Louisville joined college football's big spenders club yesterday. It now is paying its coach more than those at Oklahoma, Florida, Tennessee, Florida State and other national powers.Professors at Louisville get paid less than faculty members at Harvard, Yale and Columbia.
For that reason, U of L athletic director Tom Jurich said Bobby Petrino's new 10-year contract worth at least $25.5 million means more to the football program than simply having a better chance to hang on to one of the nation's hottest coaches.
"I think this says to the country and to everybody involved in college football that we're serious about being a major player," Jurich said. "A lot of people talk a good game. We've put our money where our mouth is.
Wouldn't the Provost and Deans be saying, "we're serious about being a major academic institution" if they raised faculty salaries to a level above Harvard's?
Keep that $26 million figure in mind when you consider this fact: the entire College of Arts and Sciences budget at University of Louisville was $41 million (p. 39) in the fiscal year that just ended.
Here's another number to consider. The football stadium has 42,000 seats. Generously figure 7 home games per season over a 10 year period. Do the math and that's 2.94 million fans in attendance.
Petrino is going to be paid $8.67 per seat per game for the next decade, assuming they don't increase the size of the stadium (they want to do that, however).
One more number. I direct the Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order, which gives away $200,000 annually. There are also awards in Psychology, Music, Education and Religion, all giving away the same amount, totaling $1 million annually.
Petrino will be pulling in more than two and a half times the total awards of all 50 Grawemeyer winners over the next decade.
That's good work if you can get it.
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