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The Highest Paid Coaches In Sports
Want to make it as a big time coach? It's best if you aren't good enough to play past college, and get started early on the X's and O's.
Bill Belichick, the New England Patriots' resident genius, last played as a tight end at unheralded Wesleyan University in Connecticut in the early 1970s. Despite an economics degree, he may well have started off as the lowest paid member of Wesleyan's class of 1975, reportedly earning less than $50 a week as an assistant coach with the Baltimore Colts. But that knack for defensive schemes would pay off.
Ten jobs, 37 years, 175 wins and three Super Bowls later (plus a pile more as an assistant), Belichick makes more money than any coach in America, some $7.5 million annually. While the Patriots have never publicly disclosed Belichick's salary, no pundit we spoke to doubted it was north of $7 million what the Seattle Seahawks were paying Mike Holmgren when the club extended is contract in 2007.
With eight of the top ten spots, the NFL dominates the list highest paid coaches in the land. And that's without counting the Saints' Sean Payton, who will forfeit his $7 million plus salary this year while he sits out a suspension, and the Giants' Tom Coughlin, the two time Super Bowl winner who doesn't quite crack the top ten despite an estimated $5.25 million a year (Coughlin, showing no sign of slowing down at 65, will probably cash in with one more long term contract before he's done).
The most obvious reason for NFL dominance: price competition coach outlet store online purses from the college ranks that drives coach online outlet factory up compensation for both head coaches and assistants. College competition also drives up coaching salaries in the NBA, the coach outlet factory only league in which coaches salaries are comparable to the NFL. and resignation of Mike D'Antoni in New York has left just Boston's Doc Rivers ($7 million) and San Antonio's Gregg Popovich ($6 million) among the elite ten.
Among football's big earners, it isn't coach factory outlet atlantic city just Bellichick who took the long road to coaching stardom and the big money that comes with it. Washington's Mike Shanahan ($7 million a year) started out as an assistant at Northern Arizona right out of college. Seattle's Pete Carroll (also $7 million) was a grad assistant at his alma mater, the University of Pacific, before beginning his run at major conference schools like Arkansas, Iowa State and Ohio State. The Steelers' Mike Tomlin was a small college player at William Mary before launching his coaching career as an assistant at Virginia Military Institute.
Then there's Chicago's Lovie Smith, a linebacker at the University of Tulsa, started coaching high school ball right after he graduated from Tulsa in1980. It took him until 1996 to reach the NFL, when he got the gig as linebackers coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Working under T0ny Dungy in Tampa proved fruitful eight years later Smith was the head coach of the Chicago Bears. He's gone 71 57 with a Super Bowl appearance in eight years.
The two members of the NFL's top ten that did play in the league, St. Louis' Jeff Fisher and Arizona's Ken Whisenhunt, had relatively undistinguished careers Fisher played coach outlet store online sale 49 games with the Bears while Whisenhunt carved a spot for himself as a blocking tight end with three teams over nine seasons. If you've got big time talent, why not go to USC (Fisher) or Georgia Tech (Whisenhunt)? But if coaching is your goal, Wesleyan University will do just fine.
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