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posted by King Minos in Money / Career

No Credit for Attacking Sports, Coach Salaries!

February 13, 2013

Actually, there is no actual pay involved in any of my criticisms! I like to think the best things in life ought to be free!

News that Head Coach Mark Richt will get a $400 k salary bump certainly did not surprise. UGA had a little blurb "trial balloon" about upcoming money negotiations planted in the paper a few weeks ago!

But is spending on coaches' salaries and big football programs putting UGA and other higher ed institutions on a literal road to hell?! Well ... if this were so, I would note the road seems very long!

What about all the focus on sports? Nothing new; ancient, see "Olympics" on wiki.

What they will say, even if you do attack ....

1. Monies for sports, including compensation for coaches, come from private sources; namely, as funds held within a private corporation set-up to run athletics at UGA and other institutions.

2. As a separate entity, this corporation is not controlled by UGA, proper. As a separate entity, GAA spending does not subtract or add to the monies available, say, for faculty salaries. Even as the head of the GAA, the University President might have no clue what the GAA is planning to do!

The point ...

Business as usual under the new President, as long as possible! And, judging by past UGA accomplishments, that's not a bad idea!

UGA spending on sports represents an institutional priority. It means those running the show decided to lower spending on faculty and staff, in order to raise it for coaches.*

AND ... they spend all sorts of OTHER (1) monies , too, that reduce the amounts available for traditional university tasks! (THIS is the reason singling out coach pay or sports, generally, is, itself "unsporting!" This is but one University spending priority, among many, designed to reduce the stature and recognition of teaching and research at UGA and throughout the ranks of "land grant" and similar "state" public institutions.)

But, contrary to the gist of MFA's comments, today, UGA does indeed play "follow the leader" with institutions throughout the SEC and throughout the USA not just on spending for coaches; but for spending on everything else as well!

Steady as she goes, until she stops!

Higher education, today, at UGA, in GA, and across the land seems a desperate bid for intellectual monoculture: First, we did it because of scarce resources (imitation is the ...); now we do it to gain "marketshare" aka "enrollment;" or because "everyone else is doing it;" or, due to desperation (or, say it's because of that!) about a fading economy!

WE DO: What the others do ...

Like buffalo running across a prairie ... not thinking of a cliff!

If critics could have stopped the beasts, early, they may have had a chance ...

Go Dawgs!

(1) OTHER spending that REDUCES the amount available for faculty and staff compensation: Corporate-type pay for administrators, and BOR insiders; Parking decks; new buildings; public relations; IT folks involved in PR; commercial TV station; gold-plated UGA PD facilities, SUVs, etc.; free football tickets for political leaders; walking-around-money for local and state-wide lobbying and lobbyists; probably ... sweetheart contracts and deals with sitting Regent's or family and friends of same; jobs programs for out-of-work ex-Presidents and ex-political leaders who still might be able to "get us something;" monies paid in a similar category to people for keeping their mouths shut; money to keep bodies hidden; monies paid to dig-up bodies at competing institutions aka " 'dig-up' and ... beggar-thy-neighbor!"; MCG-who? Laughing out loud

*Reduced compensation for teaching, research, professors, staff, etc., is the long-term trend in higher education at UGA and around the nation; similarly, enhanced compensation for sports and coaches are complementary trends. In other words, the claim by UGA administrators blaming state cutbacks for falling faculty salaries is false propaganda; and belies their own stated efforts to reduce the number of faculty. Both taxpayers and the faculty have a vested interest in a fundamental understanding: The ratio of spending on, say, faculty pay v. coach pay is not likely to change; more money may raise faculty pay, but only as a subset of higher increases directed at more important things like spending on sports and building programs. Unless, the Regents have turned over a new leaf and are telling the truth, this time ... Innocent

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