It isn’t pretty – from the bottom on up (in millions):
Wash St 9.90
Ariz St. 17.8
U C L A 18.4
O S U 22
U S C 29.2
The truth hurts.
First all, I don’t think we should hold our breath for Doba to be canned. Not that we’re calling for it, of course, and look no further than UW to see how firing head coaches can put you in the toilet in a hurry if you aren’t careful. But, as Thrasher used to say when I was screaming for the King of Poop Island to be canned in 1999, we DON’T HAVE THE MONEY TO PAY TWO FULL STAFFS! When you have limited funds, you can’t dedicate too much of it into coaching salaries, and if you fire Doba, you still pay him to go away. We’ve made our bed with Grandpa, and unless he retires and leaves the money on the table, he’s our head coach through 2008.
That said, Doba is such a class act, if we lay another losing egg of a season next year, I’d be shocked if he didn’t just retire and turn this thing over to a new leader from within.
The shocker in all of this? That the OSU Beavs, who used to hang with us around the $10 million mark, suddenly vault up to $22 million!?!? I know the Reser sponsorship is nice and the renovation has been well-received, but man, they have gotten BUSY with raising money! I’m also quite surprised that they moved past the Quack Attack and their plasma TV’s, green HumVee’s, luxury suites, that bastard Phil Knight, etc.
The sad thing for us? Stanford is building a brand new facility, to open next year, as they’ll tear down the Farm after the last game this year. So they are moving forward. Cal has a promise in place to completely renovate their house, as evidenced by Tedford re-upping last year. And, UW, even in the worst of times? Still generating over 27 MILLION. What a cash cow. For you non-math majors out there, that’s our revenue times 3. Scary.
Then again, numbers like this are an important slap in my face. This is the first year out of the last 4 that I haven’t donated at least some money to the football program, and I feel quilty about it when I see numbers like this. I have this love of this team, this school, yet I can’t write a tax-deductible check to a school that obviously needs every penny they can find!!?! I see stuff like that, and I’m thinking “where do I get off criticizing the Cougs when I’m not doing my part??”
That’s the thing that we can’t lose sight of. We CAN in fact help. We are really the owners of this team. We at home have been saving a lot of money to get ready for our big move into the new home next month, and well, the cash just hasn’t been readily available. But, and I am writing this for my own good for next year and beyond, but beginning in the 2006 season, the Hawkins family of 4 WILL be season ticket holders. I don’t care if we only go to 1/2 the games, or even less than that, but the fact is that I will be putting my money where my mouth is. I know I can scrape together the money to help something that I love. Right now that’s the most important thing I can do to help them out, and man, do they need it.
The rumblings about being asked to leave the Pac-10 are very real. Add it all up.
Lowest revenues + smallest TV market + smallest season ticket fan base + lousy facilities = good-bye Pac-10.