Thursday, May 24, 2012

Report: Football assistant coaches earn raises

We've known since MSU announced the retainment of Pat Narduzzi in January that MSU would increase his salary heavily. We'd known since last season that there were plans to give the assistant coaches raises.

Today, the LSJ got the details on those raises. Here are the numbers:

Pat Narduzzi (defensive coordinator): Raise from $233,000 to $500,000. The three-year deal has a retention bonus of one month's salary. Buyout of $250,000 Narduzzi must pay if he leaves for another coordinator job. Buyout does not go into effect if he leaves for a head-coaching job.

Dan Roushar (offensive coordinator): Raise from $230,000 to $305,000

Dave Warner (quarterbacks): Raise from $175,000 to $205,000

Brad Salem (running backs): Raise from $170,000 to $200,000

Terry Samuel (wide receivers): Raise from $163,500 to $182,000

Mark Staten (offensive line): Raise from $170,000 to $200,000

Ted Gill (defensive line): Raise from $163,500 to $182,000

Mike Tressel (linebackers/special teams): Raise from $170,000 to $203,000

Harlon Barnett (defensive backs): Raise from $170,000 to $203,000

Given the recent success of the football program, it's hard to argue against any of these raises, especially considering MSU was near the bottom of the Big Ten in assistant coach pay. Narduzzi obviously was the most deserving, given his recent track record and courtship from Texas A&M last winter.

MSU isn't going to keep Narduzzi forever, but this contract shows MSU is willing to pay what it takes for long-term success in football. This way, Narduzzi likely will only leave for a step up. If there's one thing every head coach agrees on, it's that their assistants are underpaid. Georgia head coach Mark Richt got in trouble with the NCAA for paying his coaches with money out of his own pocket. Brady Hoke's success at Michigan was helped by some of the highest salaries for assistants in the country.

Mark Dantonio is building his own coaching tree, with Don Treadwell and Dan Enos already having left for head-coaching jobs, and this money shows the program won't take a step back if more coaches leave. For what it's worth, I could see Warner, Tressel and Barnett earning head-coaching or coordinator jobs down the road.

For most of Dantonio's time at MSU, the program has gotten away with underpaying coaches to develop underrated recruits. The program is on the upswing with the play on the field and the renovations of that field. These salary increases will help MSU try to find consistent, long-term success — something the program has historically lacked.

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