Gridiron on the Plains: Let’s Talk Salaries. All of the Salaries.

On Friday, the Dallas Morning News published an interactive graphic that details the salaries of the athletic department, mainly the entire, yes entire, football and training staff. We look at some details and consider the appropriateness of releasing these salaries.

Photo via Charles Henry @ Flickr.
There was a Texas Tech spcific article from DMN’s Tommy Magelssen that points out a few things.

  • The salary of athletic director Kirby Hocutt, who makes $650,000 per year, which is 11th on their list (this might include the SEC and Big 12, but I didn’t verify this). Hocutt has the opportunity to earn more through incentives, up to $150,000.I’d be curious as to how many years Hocutt has remaining on his deal.
  • Head coach Kliff Kingsbury is the 4th highest paid Big 12 coach, behind Bob Stoops, Mack Brown, and Mike Gundy.
  • Texas Tech has some additional non-coaching staff that earns a bit of money as well:

    While Texas Tech surely has a large staff contingent focused on recruiting, only one staff has a title specifically catered to it. Recruiting assistant Jason Reed earns $50,000 per year.


    Including Hocutt, there are 14 employees associated with the football program who make at least $100,000. In addition all of the assistant coaches and the head of strength and conditioning, Texas Tech’s associate athletic director of sports medicine (Grant Stovall), chief of staff (Kenny Bell) and director of football operations (Tommy McVay) all eclipse the $100K mark. Texas’ 29 employees leads the $100,000 mark.

  • The list includes pretty much everything, from the salaries of the managers of the training facility (Jeff Jones makes $48,933) and Associate Directors (Scott Lacefield makes $50,147.28), to Tommy McVay, who makes $120,000.
  • There was a separate list of interesting things and Kliff Kingsbury gets 64 tickets on game day and LSU has a running back coach, $660,000, that makes more than David Gibbs, $550,00.
  • There was this other article by Kate Hairopolous who writes about the coordinator jobs and how those seem to be increasing rapidly. Hocutt did say that he is not opposed for Texas Tech to pay a coordinator 7 figures:

    “Our expectations are to win a Big 12 Conference championship,” he said. “That thrusts you into the national discussion for consideration into the final four playoff. With success comes a market where others are going to try to take your top personnel. And that’s a position that we all want to be in. It’s a market-driven topic but at the same time, it’s a success-driven topic.”

    The question was asked about what happens when your ace recruiter is paid more than the coordinator, i.e., it is the players that win, not necessarily the coaches. I sorta buy into that.

This was weird.  Quite literally, the Dallas Morning News posted the salaries of every person remotely associated with the athletic program, from the laundry attendant to the head coach.  That seems strangely intrusive and I don’t think I like it.  Sure, these guys and gals work for a public university, but there seems to be some sort of dividing line between the coaches, who are the public faces to the program, and the recruiting coordinators and guys behind the scenes.  They didn’t really sign up to have part of their life made completely public.

I’m trying to figure out the motivation here for the Dallas Morning News, other than of course the idea that they can do it, so they did.  Maybe there should have been a line drawn, but that didn’t happen.  Rather than draw a line of what they thought was appropriate to publish, they just published it all.  I get that idea for sure, I’m just not sure how comfortable I am with it.

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