Hotline newsletter: Comparing basketball coaches’ contracts, a diversity deep dive, trajectory assessment and more – The Denver Post
*** The Pac-12 Hotline newsletter is published twice a week. (Sign up here for a free subscription.) This edition, from April 23, has been made available in archived form.
With Tommy Lloyd’s appointment in Tucson, the Pac-12 basketball coaching lineup is set for 2021-22.
Also set: The coaching contracts.
It appears Lloyd made out pretty well for himself.
With a reported average salary of $3.1 million over the lifetime of the deal, the first-time boss will be third highest-paid coach in the conference, at least among those employed by public universities.
(It pays to have all the leverage after the institution courting your services telegraphs its interest from 17 bajillion miles away.)
So where do things stand on the salary front? Who’s overpaid and who’s underpaid? How do the Pac-12 salaries compare to coaches in peer conferences?
First, the numbers …
— Dollars are approximate and averaged over the duration of the contract.
— Figures taken from published reports and information provided by the schools.
— Duration refers to the years remaining starting with the 2021-22 season.
1. UCLA’s Mick Cronin: $4 million (duration: six years)
2. Oregon’s Dana Altman $3.65 million (five years)
3. Arizona’s Tommy Lloyd: $3.1 million (five years)
4. Washington’s Mike Hopkins $3.1 million (four years)
5. Oregon State’s Wayne Tinkle: $2.9 million (six years)
6. ASU’s Bobby Hurley: $2.6 million (three years)
7. Utah’s Craig Smith $2.1 million (six years)
8. Colorado’s Tad Boyle $1.8 million (five years)
9. Cal’s Mark Fox: $1.7 million (three years)
10. Washington State’s Kyle Smith $1.4 million (four years)
(Salaries for Stanford’s Jerod Haase and USC’s Andy Enfield are not publicly disclosed.)
• Who’s overpaid?
Well, Lloyd certainly would be in that discussion. But clearly, Hopkins hasn’t matched success to compensation in the past two seasons.
• Who’s underpaid?
I’d argue that Altman, who has been to the Sweet 16 (or beyond) in four of the past five NCAA Tournaments, deserves a raise.
And while Smith’s success through two years in Pullman doesn’t yet justify a bump, we see a raise in his future.
• How do the numbers compare?
We don’t have salary information for 2021-22 for coaches at all the public institutions in the Power Six conferences.
But here’s what we do have: USA Today’s database for 2021 compensation figures.
Using that as the guide for the ’22 Pac-12 data listed above, we find:
— Cronin’s salary would land on the third tier nationally.
John Calipari is atop the list at $8 million annually. Tennessee’s Rick Barnes and Chris Beard, who jumped from Texas Tech to Texas, were paid about $5 million.
Then came a group of coaches in the $4 million range — Cronin would be slotted with them.
— Altman has a top-20 salary, just below the likes of Kansas’ Bill Self and Virginia’s Tony Bennett.
— Oh, and former Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak owned a top-10 contract prior to his dismissal.
All of which suggests the pay scale for Pac-12 basketball coaches compares more favorably than that of Pac-12 football coaches.
In football, Pac-12 coaches are on the outskirts of the top 20. In basketball, they have been, and will be, reasonably well represented in the top 20.
Given football’s importance relative to basketball, that’s upside down.
Then again, upside down is right-side up for the value assigned to football on some Pac-12 campuses. — Jon Wilner
• Which Pac-12 basketball programs have rising trajectories? Which are cratering? Which have entered a rut? We assessed the short-term direction of all 12 in the first installment of our outlook for 2021-22.
• Based on current public health guidance and COVID curves, we expect fans in the stands for the Pac-12 football season. It’s only a matter of how many.
• There’s much to like about Arizona’s decision to hire Tommy Lloyd. But is there enough to like for a program of Arizona’s stature? We’re not convinced. Here’s our honest assessment of the hiring practices in Tucson.
• Two Pac-12 athletic directors interviewed for the vacancy at Northwestern, but neither Pat Chun nor Jim Knowlton is a candidate for the job.
• That counts as a win for both schools, as we addressed in the latest Pac-12 stock report — along with a major injury in Seattle and other developments across the conference.
• With the Pac-12 basketball coaching lineup complete for 2021-22, the Hotline addressed the lack of diversity: A conference that used to be known as the “Black-10” is now the White-12.
• The Hotline mailbag, published Friday morning, attempted to define success for the conference during the football season. The road to the CFP starts in September, and it could end in September if the losses pile up.
• ICYMI: Previous editions of the newsletter are available in archived form.
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• We’ll start in Seattle, where the Huskies remain hopeful about their pass rush following the injury to Zion Tupuola-Fetui. Here’s coach Jimmy Lake: “If you guys remember, about a year ago nobody was talking about ZTF. Nobody even knew those initials. So we have really quality players at that position, and now it’s their turn to take over an opportunity and run with it.”
• Former USC offensive lineman Chris Brown has passed away. He was 24. Our condolences to his family.
• Cal has lost a key defensive lineman, Brett Johnson, for the 2021 season following a car accident.
• Some contract information on Oregon assistants, including playcaller Joe Moorhead.
• Lesson No. 1 from Utah’s spring practice: Beware the Utes. (Kyle Whittingham likes what he sees.)
• Colorado’s quarterback room includes a former Tennessee starter: JT Shrout plans to “compete with my boys here.”
• You have been warned: Changes are coming to the overtime rules, like ’em or not.
• Insightful look at steps the Pac-12 can take to revive its football product, courtesy of The Athletic’s Stewart Mandel.
• UCLA wing Johnny Juzang declared for the NBA Draft but with the caveat that fans were hoping for.
• We knew USC star Evan Mobley was headed to the NBA, but brother Isaiah has decided to test the waters.
• Plenty of goings and comings in Eugene, as is often the case this time of year. The latest news involves former transfer Eric Williams.
• What grade would you give Washington coach Mike Hopkins after four years? CBS Sports columnist Matt Norlander weighed in.
• In Tucson, Tommy Lloyd is keeping two key assistants from Sean Miller’s coaching staff.
• In Tempe, name tags will be needed at ASU team functions, at least for now.
• In Salt Lake City, new boss Craig Smith is finalizing his staff.
• WSU coach Kyle Smith continues to add to his roster. The latest arrival in Pullman is Kim Aiken, the Big Sky’s Defensive Player of the Year.
What’s coming on the Pac-12 Hotline:
• Next week brings the NFL Draft. We’ll preview and review the three-day event from the perspective of the Pac-12.
• Our near-term outlook for Pac-12 basketball, which began with the trajectory assessment published early this week, continues with a deep dive into the coaching jobs.
• Please note: The Hotline’s weekly football recruiting column was paused for the basketball postseason but will ramp up next month and roll into the summer.
The next newsletter is scheduled for Tuesday. Enjoy it? Please forward this email to friends (sign up here). If you don’t, or have other feedback, let me know: [email protected]
Pac-12 basketball: History of diversity gives way to a lineup of all white coaches
Pac-12 basketball outlook: Assessing the trajectory of each program headed into 2021-22
While CU Buffs teammates pursue new opportunities, Maddox Daniels opts to end playing career
International trip still on summer calendar for CU Buffs men’s basketball
Player movement already altering Pac-12 men’s hoops landscape
*** Follow me on Twitter: @WilnerHotline
*** Pac-12 Hotline is not endorsed or sponsored by the Pac-12 Conference, and the views expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the views of the Conference.
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