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Arkansas Razorbacks and the USA Today Assistant Football Coaches Salary Database

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How do the Hogs measure up?

Arkansas wide receivers coach Michael Smith
Arkansas wide receivers coach Michael Smith
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

USA Today released their college football assistant coaches salary database yesterday. It was interesting to see how the assistant salary pools compared across the country. Of course, this is among public schools only, so places like USC and Notre Dame are not included.

Here are some Razorback-related takeaways:

  • Arkansas' highest paid assistant is Jim Chaney at $550,000 but he's only the 46th highest paid in the nation.
  • Robb Smith is not far behind at $500,000, tied for 61st in the nation. I wouldn't be surprised at all to see him get a bump this offseason after the amazing year Arkansas' defense had. I assume that's what Bielema meant when he said he would be proactive on keeping his staff in tact. It will be interesting to see if Arkansas moves up on this list at all next year.
  • Of the schools included, Arkansas' total salary pool came in 20th in the nation at $3,218,800. That's also 9th in the SEC. The SEC rankings are as follows:
  1. LSU (1st nationally) - $5.499 million
  2. Alabama (2nd) - $5.213
  3. Auburn (4th) - $4.37
  4. Texas A&M (11th) - $3.484
  5. South Carolina (13th) - $3.334
  6. Georgia (14th) - $3.328
  7. Tennessee (16th) - $3.265
  8. Florida (18th) - $3.226
  9. Arkansas (20th) - $3.219
  10. Missouri (22nd) - $3.169
  11. Kentucky (30th) - $2.716
  12. Mississippi State (33rd) - $2.683
  13. Ole Miss (34th) - $2.596

As you can see, LSU and Alabama are paying substantially more than anyone else - about $1 million more overall than Auburn and about $2 million more than the 4-10 conference schools. Those seven schools in the middle are only separated by a little more than $300,000.

Then their's a not-insignificant jump to the bottom three. The Mississippi schools certainly got incredible value for what they paid this season. It'll be interesting to see what happens at Ole Miss. We know Hugh Freeze's raise and extension also included raises for his assistants, but as you can see, they could throw another $500k into their pool and still be 11th in the league.

LSU of course is at the other end of the spectrum, paying a heck of a lot of money for a staff to only go 8-4.

I also think it's amazing/insane that head coaches are now often making as much or more than all of their assistants combined.

Oh, and remember Bielema's big point about not being able to afford to keep his coaches at Wisconsin? The Badgers' salary pool is $2.369 million, nearly $1 million less than Arkansas, and would be last in the SEC (not counting Vanderbilt, which is a private school and numbers aren't available).