Nick Saban. Worth every penny.
Earlier this week, Seattle approved a move to a $15 an hour minimum wage. Because … well … it’s Seattle, and that’s completely idiotic, something Freshman economics will tell you. The inflation it will cause aside, stocking shelves at 3 a.m. or flipping burgers isn’t worth $15 an hour. That’s called cost exceeding production.
Also earlier this week, Alabama approved a raise to $6.9 million per year for football coach Nick Saban. That’s called production exceeding cost.
The numbers are eye popping … nearly $7 million for a football coach. But the real-life reality? Alabama is probably getting a steal.
As Sports Illustrated reported earlier this year, Alabama’s athletic department brought in revenues higher than all NHL franchises and 25 NBA versions. And they weren’t even the highest. Texas was, which would explain all of those annual “Is Nick Saban going to Texas?” ordeals.
And just to add a disclaimer, those revenues in Tuscaloosa weren’t because of gymnastics, field hockey, or heck, even basketball probably.
According to Rivals.com recruiting rankings, since Saban took over in 2007, Alabama’s classes have AVERAGED 2.6 and if you take away that pesky partial first year when the coaching change happened … 1.6.
Truth is, Saban is probably worth double that. Yes, the Alabama brand sells itself, but do you think Mike Shula and 6-6 is bringing that in? Wins are obviously the barometer. Big name coaches who come into a place with plenty of fanfare and leave without enough wins don’t bring that revenue in.
But Saban wins, so it sort of takes care of itself, and he’s basically at this point reverse recruiting … instead of sending letters to recruits hoping they want to hop on board, they’re stuffing Alabama’s mailbox hoping the Crimson Tide bat their eyes long enough to let them on board.
Alabama football right now is in a crazy utopia. Forget that Auburn went to the National Championship Game plus won one within the last five years. That matters not to Alabama.
Alabama is picking and choosing right now, like the skinny blonde in a short skirt. They get what they want, and they don’t really need to try so hard for it, just walk out the front door and go get the mail while all of the heads turn.
It’ll end at some point. Nick Saban is the best football coach of this recent generation and has proven so in spite of the SEC at its power-zenith during his time in the league. But Saban is 62, and it’s hard to see him coaching until his contract is up at 70. Granted, it probably doesn’t matter in the naked economics of things. He could retire tomorrow and Bama be on the hook until 2022 and still they’re probably making money on the whole situation.
Saban’s agent, Jimmy Sexton, has to be as good as any in the nation as well. Basically, one school’s athletic department buoyed by football alone brings in more than Alabama, and somehow every 3 to 5 years, they manage to use that school to leverage even more money from the Alabama coffers.
“How much money do you need to make?”
The answer is typically: “More.”
Worth every penny, is Nick Saban. And if he’s smart, they’ll be pushing for $10 million before it’s all over.