Not sure how many of you have heard this story:
Look, I am not saying the guys is a saint. It is not like he gave up his raise to save some janitor from being laid off. The money he gave up went to pay for a pretty nice perk for his team. Still, I think it is a nice self-less gesture and shows he really cares about his players. There are quite a few big-time coaches who would not have thought of giving up their own money for something like this. They would have tried to get boosters to pay for it or pitched a fit and forced the university to find a way to get the funds.Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings sacrificed a $100,000 pay raise to fund his Commodores' 10-day trip to Australia earlier this month.
"I knew the university was facing a tough time just like the rest of the country. There were people losing jobs. There was so much distress economically for the university to shell out $100,000 for us to make the trip."
When deposits were due for the basketball team's trip, officials couldn't commit school funds without knowing that they would be paid back. Stallings then asked if he could forego the raise due him in his contract to pay for the trip.
Worth noting-- Stallings makes more than $1.3 million a year at Vandy and is one of the highest paid coaches in the country. Just in terms of what his school pays him (not counting outside deals with shoe companies and other stuff like that), Stallings makes more than Coach K, Roy Williams, Billy Donovan, and many other top-tier coaches.
--Jason "I was a bit shocked at how high Stallings annual salary was" Evans
Stallings has had a great summer in the press, which quite frankly is overdue. He's been a class act in Nashville for a long time, but doesn't usually beg for the same sort of attention as other coaches in the SEC (see shirtless Pearl). Stallings has quietly rebuilt Vandy after VBK's tenure into a solid competitor both in conference and nationally.
I'm quite bullish on Vandy's upcoming season. Beal looks to have put in a lot of work over the summer, Ogilvy's healthy, last year's freshman are a year older, and we now have our own JJ (John Jenkins). Go Dores!
Does seem like a silly technicality though.
--Jason "one could probably move the numbers around in such a way as to make virtually anything paid for by donations from boosters" Evans
While I think it's a good thing that Stallings did for his team, the cynic in me has to point out that he gets the benefit of a few weeks more practice for the team, which will no doubt contribute to this season's success. It was the smart thing to do.
No soup for you!
I have no doubt that certain, unnamed, other coaches would simply have gotten rich Kentucky boosters to pay for the trip rather than forgo their own salary. But, I would never seek to identify the guy who would do something as CALlous as that.
--Jason "just funnin'" Evans