< Back to front page Text size +

Football coaches who leave college early

Posted by Christopher Shea  January 11, 2010 01:58 PM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

There's a funny little NCAA rule you may have heard about. While coaches are allowed to earn millions per year, the players who win the games on the field aren't allowed to make a dime. That would be a violation of the integrity of amateur sports, naturally!

Last year, the University of Southern California's then-quarterback, Mark Sanchez, decided he wanted to play for more than glory, so he entered the NFL draft, thereby skipping his senior year. His very well-compensated coach, Pete Carroll, loudly opined that this was a very bad idea--ostensibly because Sanchez wasn't ready for the bigs but, just maybe, because Sanchez's self-interest conflicted with his own. Said Carroll:

The facts are so strong against this decision. After analyzing all the information, the truth is there, he should have stayed for another year. He lost out on a chance to fully prepare himself. The facts are there's a 62 percent failure rate for underclassman quarterbacks.

Well, yesterday Sanchez led the New York Jets past the Cincinnati Bengals in the first round of the playoffs. Coincidentally, Carroll, a former Jets and Patriots head coach, has just announced he's rejoining the pros: He will coach the Seattle Seahawks next season.

Sanchez, now, like Carroll, a multimillionaire, did not miss the opportunity to turn the tables. "I just wanted everybody to know I completely disagree with his decision," Sanchez said. "Statistics show that it's not a good choice."

Sanchez and Carroll are friends, but the exchange highlighted the hypocrisy and paternalism of college "amateurism" where big-time sports are concerned. Now Sanchez, and not just his coaches, gets paid when he wins huge, nationally televised games.

mark-sanchez-jets-quarterback.jpg Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez

(Via Matthew Yglesias)

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

About brainiac Brainiac is the daily blog of the Globe's Sunday Ideas section, covering news and delights from the worlds of art, science, literature, history, design, and more. You can follow us on Twitter @GlobeIdeas.
Brainiac blogger Kevin Hartnett is a writer in Columbia, South Carolina. He can be reached here.

Leon Neyfakh is the staff writer for Ideas. Amanda Katz is the deputy Ideas editor. Stephen Heuser is the Ideas editor.

Guest blogger Simon Waxman is Managing Editor of Boston Review and has written for WBUR, Alternet, McSweeney's, Jacobin, and others.

Guest blogger Elizabeth Manus is a writer living in New York City. She has been a book review editor at the Boston Phoenix, and a columnist for The New York Observer and Metro.

Guest blogger Sarah Laskow is a freelance writer and editor in New York City. She edits Smithsonian's SmartNews blog and has contributed to Salon, Good, The American Prospect, Bloomberg News, and other publications.

Guest blogger Joshua Glenn is a Boston-based writer, publisher, and freelance semiotician. He was the original Brainiac blogger, and is currently editor of the blog HiLobrow, publisher of a series of Radium Age science fiction novels, and co-author/co-editor of several books, including the story collection "Significant Objects" and the kids' field guide to life "Unbored."

Guest blogger Ruth Graham is a freelance journalist in New Hampshire, and a frequent Ideas contributor. She is a former features editor for the New York Sun, and has written for publications including Slate and the Wall Street Journal.

Joshua Rothman is a graduate student and Teaching Fellow in the Harvard English department, and an Instructor in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He teaches novels and political writing.


Browse this blog

by category