Who Is The Highest Paid Public Employee In Your State?

Tyler Durden's picture

Think the best paid public servant in your state is some tax-collecting bureaucrat with a commission-based comp structure, or some administrative apparatchik? Think again. As the following infographic from Deadspin shows, in 41 US states, the highest-paid public employee is either the football, basketball or hockey coach at the local state school. Whick takes cares of the "Circuses" part. For now, at least, public sector bakers did not make the list...

But fear not: your taxes don't pay for these key actors in the daily lineup of "bread and circuses" - from Deadspin: "The bulk of this coaching money—especially at the big football schools—is paid out of the revenue that the teams generate."

What are the considerations?

  1. Coaches don't generate revenue on their own; you could make the exact same case for the student-athletes who actually play the game and score the points and fracture their legs.
  2. It can be tough to attribute this revenue directly to the performance of the head coach. In 2011-2012, Mack Brown was paid $5 million to lead a mediocre 8-5 Texas team to the Holiday Bowl. The team still generated $103.8 million in revenue, the most in college football. You don't have to pay someone $5 million to make college football profitable in Texas.
  3. This revenue rarely makes its way back to the general funds of these universities. Looking at data from 2011-2012, athletic departments at 99 major schools lost an average of $5 million once you take out revenue generated from "student fees" and "university subsidies." If you take out "contributions and donations"—some of which might have gone to the universities had they not been lavished on the athletic departments—this drops to an average loss of $17 million, with just one school (Army) in the black. All this football/basketball revenue is sucked up by coach and AD salaries, by administrative and facility costs, and by the athletic department's non-revenue generating sports; it's not like it's going to microscopes and Bunsen burners.

So what constitutes total salary, and can taxpayers be on the hook after all? Apparently, yes.

Most of these databases include only the coaches' base salaries, which are drawn directly from the state fund. This is how you could be led to believe that Virginia's offensive coordinator earns more than its head coach.


Far exceeding these base salaries is the "additional compensation" that almost all of these coaches receive, which is tied to media appearances, apparel contracts, and fundraising. While this compensation does not come directly from the state fund it is guaranteed in the coaches' contracts; if revenue falls short, the school—and thus the state—is on the hook to cover the difference. Plus, even it doesn't come directly from taxpayers, this compensation is still problematic for all the reasons listed above.


Beyond salary and additional compensation, coaches earn money from bonus incentives tied primarily to the team's performance. This analysis ignored those bonuses and focused on guaranteed money, as it's impossible to guess at whether a coach will hit his benchmarks. And we're not even touching the ridiculous amounts of money coaches can get if they're fired before their contract ends.

Paying millions to "mediocre" state coaches: not a bad gig if one can get it.

One wonders - how long until Wall Street starts pitching football coach total return swaps and football victory collateralized structured products? And when will these subsequently become securitized, as footballs and jockstraps become quality eligible collateral to extract some more value out of yet another source of "assets"?

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Flakmeister's picture

Yep, just an example of the States getting their priorities straight....

The Shootist's picture

Crony capitalism and fiat allocation working perfectly.

Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Great.  In the liberal bastion of Minnesota, we have the top spot shared by 2 individuals.  And by shared, I don't mean split, I mean DOUBLE.  And Mark Dayton wants to raise our taxes even MOAR!!

FreeMktFisherMN's picture

Scotty, what's sad is that most people in non- TC and Duluth (iron range unions) counties are very down to earth/conservative. 

Precious's picture

Color Key:


Yellow: Gender employment-discrimination class action filed by Hillaryland and Associates.

Orange: Discrimination class action certification on hold pending NFL concussion litigation.

ratso's picture

You might try Ortega y Gassett for the effect of democracy on the masses and their values for an answer to how this ridiculous juxtapostion has come about.  This is democracy sliding down the slippery slope of the degradation values.  It has nothing to do with the right or the left.

God save us from rampant mediocrity and stifling self-indulgence.

solgundy's picture

Roll Tide!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Spigot's picture

Ummm, yeah. Dear God we are so screwed.

MagicHandPuppet's picture

Fucking statist circus monkey leaders. And the sheep worship them. 'We' ( and by we I mean You) will get what we deserve.

AldousHuxley's picture

Centuries after Roman Empire declined, nobody cares about university of Rome, but the coliseum still generates revenue from tourism dollars.

Humans want bread and circuses now rather than intellectual development in the future.

Helvetico's picture

Big ups for the relevant philosophy reference.

Proofreder's picture

For the curious ...


Large number of search references for Gassett, however the spelling with a singular 't' is correct.  One more unintended consequence of the Web ... mistakes compound as research is totally neglected - takes too much time perhaps.

"We do not know what is happening to us, and this is precisely what is happening to us, not to know what is happening to us ...  (1926)

And then there is this ageless poetry - perfect description of a Black Swan event -

There are known knowns. 
There are things we know we know. 
We also know 
There are known unknowns. 
That is to say 
We know there are some things 
We do not know. 
But there are also unknown unknowns, 
The ones we don't know 
We don't know.

The Shootist's picture

Was ortega y gassett the chap who wrote about hunting? Good stuff.

Welder's picture

'Revolt of the masses' is one of the greatest books of the 20th century.

AldousHuxley's picture

Unfortunately with American education system, you have masses of idiots who will allocate more to football than medicine

Plus peak medicine with humans outliving beyond their senses.

SafelyGraze's picture

it's not about the coach being able to win games

it's about a coach being able to lose a game when favored 20-to-1

just a little xmas present for the board of trustees, something to say "thanks for hiring me!"

a mediocre coach can -- at best -- only lose a game when favored 2-to-1

Chupacabra-322's picture

Bread & Circus for the steeple.

aerojet's picture

And yet most of those fuckers still vote for Democrats!

A Nanny Moose's picture

Looks more like Pane et Circenses to me.

Buck Johnson's picture

Fiat DISallocation is what's happening.  Don't worry, when the states implode it will take alot of these salaries with it.

freewolf7's picture

Support your local distraction.

The Heart's picture

"Support your local distraction."

Yep! You said it. Distraction!

Coincidence? Just reading this prior to the daily ZH visit. Check out these two new stories below. If there is ANYONE on board that can not only help expose this crime and corruption, but also help stop this insanity, please do so. WE DO NOT WANT A FALSE FLAG EVENT TO MANIFEST!

"Right now, Hilary Clinton and President Obama are facing the possible downfall of their political careers over the Benghazi cover-up. Thanks to recent testimony, we now know that the Obama administration actually ordered the stand-down of U.S. military forces, directly causing the death of a U.S. ambassador as well as those in the embassy who attempted to save his life.

This is a scandal many times more explosive than Watergate. As the Benghazi investigation unfolds, it may very well end up in the forced resignation of Obama himself.

“Greenlighting” a pre-planned operation

To avoid that from happening, Clinton, Obama and all the other globalist minions in Washington D.C. are trying to figure out what false flag scheme they have ready to go right now. They desperately need to pull the trigger on something: a bombing, a mass shooting, a hundred dead kids bleeding out on public sidewalks or something that can distract the media (and the public) from asking too many questions on Benghazi."


Everybody knows this was a hit on the ambassador to cover up the weapons of mass destruction that have been smuggled into Syria for use later. Everybody knows the plans to blame the Assad administration for the use of these weapons. The story is already been reported.







And from Ann Barnhardt:

"Because Chris Stevens was a lynchpin in the running of arms by the Obama regime and Clinton's State Department in full cooperation with each other to the Muslim Brotherhood and al Qaeda through Libya. And yes, it is absolutely sane and appropriate to assume that Huma Abedin (Hillary's consigliere and daughter of high-ranking Muslim Brotherhood leaders) figures into this. Both Obama's White House and Hillary's State Department were mutually and equally tied to this arms running, and both of their bacons were equally in the fire. The Obama White House, I am convinced, has plans for the retention of power beyond 2016 (Michelle?), and Hillary thinks she is going to be POTUS from 2017-2025. The bottom line is that the duumvirate of the most dangerous, evil psychopaths on the face of the earth decided for slightly different reasons that Ambassador Stevens needed to be dead in order to cover the gunrunning to the Muslim Brotherhood, and so together, they killed him. They withdrew all of his security (at the behest of the State Department), told the Muslim Brotherhood that it was all-clear, guaranteed that there would be no response or retaliation to an attack (only the Oval Office could issue the stand-down order), and even put the cherry on top by instantly framing the entire hit as some sort of musloid blasphemy propaganda. That was just gratuitous. Sickeningly gratuitous."


And here is the jist of it all:


Ya know, the mass mind and the choices the people make are far more powerful than these babylonian bankster world domination and population reductionists. Once the fire of revolution is sparked, it is all over for these criminals and corrupted highest paid employees. Notice all the talk about the corruptions and crimes of isreal lately? THE PEOPLE ARE AWAKE AND KNOW WHO THE ENEMIES OF AMERICA ARE.

FeralSerf's picture

What happened to LBJ and McCain's father when they ordered a stand-down wrt defending the USS Liberty from the very lethal attack by our GCP pals? Answer: Not a goddamn thing.

There is a hidden agenda at Benghazi just as there was with the Liberty. Barry and Hill are just following orders.

The Heart's picture

Roger that FS. Thank you.

The good news is, more and more people see all this and sooner or later the hundredth monkey will see the Light and then DO something to lead the lemmings in a massive house cleaning. This is the only answer. Eliminate the trouble making bankster babylonian terrorists, and all will be well world-wide. Easy peazy!


freewolf7's picture

"Clinton, Obama and all the other globalist minions in Washington D.C. are trying to figure out what false flag scheme they have ready to go right now."

Maybe the next false flag will have the unintended consequences of being the first domino to fall.

earleflorida's picture

@ the Heart

currently as i write... general petreus's quick and untimely departure from the head of the cia for adultery [code of chivalry unbecoming an officer and a gentleman?] as a means for blackmail [?], or some other lame excuse that [i]one can conjure up to posit at the quasi-esoteric bennacle-lodestone of mr. mic's state department-- founded upon the highest standards of altruistic jingoism?! 

the depatrure as one of the free world's most decorated war hero into the clandestine and nefarious world of espionage is a msytery,... the timing,... the blackmail sophistry[?],... the questionable mistress [kennedy's & marilyn monroe/kgb connection?] ... the improbable witch-hunt that never was or ever surfaced?

but,... who was this socialite, or [?]others?

i would venture that very soon, very soon indeed... the good general's name is going to be dragged through the mud to protect one hillary/white-watergate/clinton and obama, [?]himself[?],... administration?

there's going to be alot of plausible deniability goings-on, but for petraeus who would just rather wish to fade away out of the msm's limelight-- best, better take his blinder's off--  because he's in a race for his life!?

ref:   'Clinton's Whitewater Timeline'      http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/politics/special/whitewater/timeline.htm

'The Fall of Petraeus: A CIA Coup ?'   [read between the lines of spunned-obfuscation?]    http://www.theamericanconservative.com/a-cia-coup/



MisterMousePotato's picture

"This is a scandal many times more explosive than Watergate. As the Benghazi investigation unfolds, it may very well end up in the forced resignation of Obama himself."

Ha. Ha, ha. Ha, ha, ha. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha.

Are you kidding me?

Remember, it was the Republicans (not the Democrats) who forced the resignation of Richard Nixon. Why is that important to remember? Simple. Then (and maybe even now - not absolutely sure, but maybe), the Republican rank and file was different than the Democrat rank and file. This is even more the case these days.

I believe that there is nothing - literally, absolutely nothing - that disqualifies a person from holding public office in the eyes of a Democrat as long as they're progay, proabortion, proglobal warming, antiwhite, antiChristian statists who'll keep the goodies flowing and their egos unruffled.

Alcee Hastings, for example. (A federal district court judge caught taking bribes now 'the honorable' in the house from Georgia.)

Democrats would vote for Satan. Period.

You really think they'd get upset about something like Benghazi? Give me a break.

KickIce's picture

Actually, it's one of the most free market systems we have left and the people are getting exactly what they want - and deserve.

At the bigger schools the gate easily covers the coaches salary and the football and basketball programs cover the entire athletic department.

And yes, I agree our priorities are screwed up.

Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Who builds the stadiums? The taxpayer. They wouldn't make gate if they had a mortgage to pay. Just like pro sports. They make big bank because the owners and players don't have to build and finance a venue to play their games. They can just extort more from the slaves.

KickIce's picture

Texas, Nebraska, Oregon, Ohio State, Michigan, Notre Dame - the SEC schools?  Huge amounts of cash rolling in and if they didn't have to subsidize the rest of the athletic department they could easily pay a mortgage. 

Acidtest Dummy's picture

Not true, because watching these seven teams play each other again and again wouldn't draw many fans. It is all the perenial losers who subsidize these winning programs that make the charade (of profitability) possible. "Student-athelete" is lie told prevent workers comp claims that would bankrupt collision sports. The NCAA is a charity for tax purposes only.


Gringo Viejo's picture

Here in California, all of em. Teachers, cops, firemen...hell, even our city groundskeepers. We are fucking suffocating beneath these parasitical bastards.

Element's picture

Don't know about the rest, but teachers and firemen are just parasites now?

Gringo Viejo's picture

Wish I had a dollar for every cop with a disability retirement. "Bad Back" seems to be the prefered ailment. Hard to disprove. Teachers? Well as someone said long ago...
"those who can't......teach". Now, go fuck yourself.

Element's picture

yup, you're a retard, thanks for clearing that up.

Skateboarder's picture

The old gringo's cool - don't hate. He's just pissed that there are effectively no teachers anymore, because like all other beneficiaries of the big-gub bureaucracy, public school teachers are no more than script-readers.

Element's picture



"Now, go fuck yourself." - gringo

It's not me doing the hatin' here SB.

Skateboarder's picture

Maybe he meant it in a very loving sense, i.e. "fuck you dear sir, what a gentleman you are."

Alright, alright, point taken. People used to be super nice on the internet before 2002ish, you know. It's only in recent years we've seen the decline.

Element's picture

As you see immediately below SB, that's the level of 'discussion' and logic involved, btw, careful, I'm apparently a commie. Makes you wonder how all these rambo wannabe heroes for a better world ever think they'll create one, or at least make one that's better than this? I'm polite to who is polite, the rest give 1 chance per thread. But I don't hold grudges, next thread I'll give them another chance. That's just what I do. Cheers SB.

Gringo Viejo's picture

"next thread I'll give them another chance" LMFAO

You couldn't make this shit up. These progs are oblivious to their self-absorbed absurdness.

Mix me another drink then come over here and sit on my lap

Gringo Viejo's picture

I assume you're a prog. Only a prog would consider someone telling them to get fucked hate speech. Well my little communist friend, you do not have the right to NOT be offended. Now stick your finger up that fay ass of yours and......go fuck yourself.

Fuku Ben's picture

If teachers aren't relegated to mindlessly reading from some scripted curriculum they are often treated like scum by administrations and school boards. They get scapegoated all the time to save the school money in lawsuits. Unless they have a good teacher's union. 

I know at least a half dozen die-hard we're gonna save the kids types that have taken early retirement over the last fews years or so because they said it was getting out of control

One even equated it to "the inmates running the asylum"  with the admin. putting the kids above the teachers.

This kid below is probably right. But everyone in the pyramid is to blame. Especially at the top. But the school admin is already scapegoating the teacher and reinforcing the kids actions as correct.


upWising's picture

There is a lot of truth in what you say about "script reading."  There is little choice these days in the world of "teacher accountability."  The Teachers (capital T) who really wish to teach it "how it is" rather than "by the book" are viewed as "going off the reservation" and have their lives made a true misery by administrators (little "a") and fellow teachers (little "t") who faithfully toe the party line.  Just as judges these days are given little power to really "judge" or any power to "judge" an appropriate sentence or punishment (since they are chained to federal and state "sentencing guidelines"), teachers are shackled to "frmeworks," "goals," "highly measurable behaviorable outcomes," and the tyranny or nearly-monthly testing, leaving little or no room for real Teaching.  

And the Empire crumbles..........

knukles's picture

One county employee where I live recently purchased a new 4 door Tesla.
List $103,000.
Admittedly, I do not know his financial details, but lots of 'em got 500 series Mercedes. Porsches, etc....
And we pay for life long medical, whatever....
Buncha locusts

QQQBall's picture

Firemen work 10 days a week and retire with 90% pay & full bennies. I'd tell you to GFU, but the public employee unions already have it so far up you cannot see reality...

Helvetico's picture

Ten days a week? Where did you learn your math and editing skills, public school?

DollarMenu's picture


Here's some interesting info from a Firefighter's Academy website.

Job description states typical FF works 8 days a month, and job security is tops.

If one has the time, the info is interesting, even if it might be biased, as they offer training.



Still and all, FF is a protected species, and is paid as such.