Tag Archives: finances

America Invests in the Future of College Coaches

Is your state's highest paid employee a coach?

Greetings. Each week I try to post at least one comic strip or graphic that makes you (or me) think. The above graphic shows who is the highest-paid public employee for each state. Public employee means they work at a state institution funded by public money (taxes). This is not a debate I am well versed in, but I thought the graphic was interesting and I wanted your thoughts about it.

Does anyone know if the above graphic is accurate? I have no problem accepting that a coach is the highest paid employee at a college. That is pretty easy for me to accept. I’m not sure if the graphic is accurate because of the contribution of athletic boosters. It is true that several colleges lose money because of their athletic programs. But, at least for the big time programs, there is normally a megarich booster (or several boosters) who support a lot of the athletic programs. Does it still count as being a public employee when so much of the money comes from private funds instead of taxes? This is more semantics than anything. The main argument presented in this article is that having a big-time athletic program that generates millions in revenue doesn’t really matter because the coaches’ salaries prevent this money from going back to the college.

Perhaps the more disappointing part of this graphic should be that it reflects American priorities for education. The highest paid person at many colleges is not a professor… but an athletic coach. The potential investment in our nation’s future does not go into teachers, research or technology… but to coaches.

What are your thoughts?

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NFL DRAFT Curse: “Money”

I love the NFL. I will not be shy about it. The NFL is my first, second, and THIRD favorite sport to watch. That being said, I will be studying for classes while watching the NFL Draft this weekend (grad school keeps me busy). When watching the draft I like hearing stories about the rookies although it will be hard to top the story which inspired “The Blind Side.” I also like trying to figure out each team’s strategy when they are drafting.

One of the things I keep in mind is that these are still young men. Yes, they are giants. Some of them could probably crush my skull with their hands. But they are still REALLY, REALLY young. And if they are taken in the top three rounds of the draft, they are going to make a lot of money. If they are drafted in the first round they are going to make a ton of money… millions.

NFL DRAFT CURSE: “MONEY”

But a storyline that the NFL (like other pro sports) is trying to avoid is the pro-athlete who ends up bankrupt. Believe it or not, an athlete can make millions of dollars and still end up bankrupt. How? Various reasons.

But one of the key issues for athletes, as is the same for winning the lottery, is that many people did not grow up with a lot of money. If a person doesn’t grow up with money then he/she doesn’t know how to manage it. Normally this person may get help from dad or friends (who did not grow up with money either).  So no one in his/her immediate contacts has experience with managing a lot of money.

Going from being poor to being a multimillionaire IN JUST ONE DAY is like going from being unable to swim to trying to win 8 Gold Medals in Olympic swimming. It doesn’t work.

My wife and I went through Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University to help us get our money management skills under control. My wife is amazing, but she is also my second wife. My first marriage ended in divorce. One of the key reasons my first marriage failed was because of finances. Financial issues end many marriages.

We have switched to Dave Ramsey’s cash system. It is hard, especially considering that we are living on the income of a graduate student because my wife is still unemployed. We do not use credit cards. In fact, we paid off the last credit card this month. The cash envelope system has worked well during our first year of marriage. We have had some tense discussions about money. But in general, because we use the cash system and because we have a monthly budget… the discussions are usually short, and we aren’t mad at each other. We are frustrated because we don’t have more money… but the discussions have never been about one of us spending money without telling the other (which could result in both of us spending money from the checking account and then the checking account becomes overdrawn).

My wife and I talk about our money. We pray about our money. We do our best to be accountable for it. It has worked well for us.

If people who inherit millions, or win it in the lottery, or who make it into the NFL Draft this weekend… if they took more accountability in managing their money accounts, there would be less issues with pro athletes going bankrupt after making $50-million.

I don’t remember the exact quote, but Dave Ramsey said something like: Money is called currency for a reason, because it moves. Most people don’t understand the “moving” part of money… and when they stop taking accountability for their money… they don’t know where the money moved to, and thus end up bankrupt.