Most of the highest-paid college football coaches have avoided the voluntary salary reductions that have swept Power Five programs, according to an ESPN survey.
ESPN surveyed the 65 Power Five conference schools along with 10 other prominent basketball programs. At 33 of the 75 schools, at least one of either the football and basketball coach had agreed to have his pay cut to deal with the financial crisis brought on by the pandemic.
But eight of the 10 football coaches with the largest salaries during the 2019-20 academic year have not had their salaries reduced, including Clemson’s Dabo Swinney ($9.3 million) and Alabama’s Nick Saban ($8.9 million), the two highest-paid coaches in the the sport. Among basketball coaches half of the 10 highest paid have not taken cuts, including Kentucky’s John Calipari, the nation’s top paid coach.
Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh, who made $7.5 million (tied for third highest with Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher), is the highest-paid football coach to take a pay cut, agreeing to a one-year, 10% reduction.
Among basketball coaches, Duke Mike Krzyzewski’s is the highest paid to agree to a cut. The longtime Blue Devils coach made $7.3 million last year and was part of a round of salary reductions at the school, where the highest-paid employees had their pay trimmed from 2.5% to 10%.