In a deal that was unanimously approved by the compensation committee of the University of Alabama System board of trustees, Alabama football coach Nick Saban will make $5.3 million for the 2012 season as part of a new contract worth nearly $45 million total, not including incentive bonuses. The new contract comes at a time when the university system is struggling with system-wide budget cuts. It also brings attention to the unethical nature of big-time college sports, where income increases for everyone involved except the athletes that are responsible for creating the revenue.

Under the NCAA’s archaic amateurism rules, the athletes that play for Saban are limited to scholarships that cover tuition and room and board. Meanwhile, Saban’s annual pay continues to rise without him even having to negotiate. Speaking of his latest new contract at Alabama, Saban said he “wasn’t involved at all” in the negotiation process.

“They sorta decided what they wanted to do and you decide it was good enough,” Saban said of his new contract that will pay him $630,000 more than he was paid in 2011. “It was certainly good enough for me.”

I’m sure it was good enough for you Nick. Meanwhile academic programs are being cut and star athletes can’t afford new clothes, pizza dates with girlfriends, or trips home to visit family.

Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans


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