During an interview with the Baltimore Sun, released on Monday, Maryland president Wallace Loh addressed the issue of competitive coaching salaries as part of a larger discussion about the new football head coaching vacancy at his university.
In his response, he invoked the name of Eagles coach Chip Kelly.
“We will have to pay a competitive rate. I don’t know what competitive is,” he said. “I mean, [Michigan coach Jim] Harbaugh and [Ohio State coach] Urban [Meyer] make $7 million a year. Chip Kelly, who is not doing all that well with the Philadelphia Eagles, made far, far less than that at Oregon.”
It was all part of a larger point that coaching salaries have exploded in recent years, even in the time Kelly has gone from Oregon to Philadelphia. He cited recent court decisions about new revenue streams for athletes as a force that may slow that rapid coaching salary growth.
Why does it matter? It’s a university official naming the hottest coaching name in the game right now at a time when the dust has barely settled on this past weekend’s firing.
In the wake of that, possibilities seem endless and options seem countless. Now limiting those options right now is part of the public discussion right now.
Loh invoked Oregon a second time, earlier in the interview, in trying to pinpoint exactly where his school falls on the spectrum of job attractiveness.
“This is not going into a school with an established reputation like Michigan and Ohio State,” he said. “But the potential for growth, the potential of this being another Oregon, assuming that’s the direction we all go.”
Watch his full interview with the Sun here.