Sunday, April 25, 2010

Supersized salary slam-dunk

Universities have put a lot of emphasis on the money-making potential of athletic programs, and for good reason --- they can be profitable. But to make that money, universities have to spend money. That reality was brought home in the Cedar Valley March 24 when a raise was announced for University of Northern Iowa men's basketball Coach Ben Jacobson as his team left for St. Louis. The Panthers had just defeated No. 1-seeded University of Kansas in the NCAA tournament and were preparing to play against Michigan State in the "Sweet 16," where they were handed a heartbreaking defeat. Jacobson's salary was bumped from $289,000 to $450,000 per year, his contract extended for the next decade with $25,000 annual raises. The increase is all funded by private donations. In the meantime, UNI's professors recently received pay cuts due to reduced state funding in an economic downturn. It didn't take long for university faculty to highlight this and note its corresponding effect on morale. For more about the situation, follow these links:

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