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Charlie Sykes: Sykes Writes

A Giant Double Dip for Barry

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So $1 million is just not enough for Barry Alvarez? He needs to pay himself an additional $225,000 for coaching the Rose Bowl?  For years, Alvarez worked as both athletic director and head UW coach coach for a single salary.

Apparently, he felt that was exploited, abused, and ripped off. "You know what? I did my first three (years) in double duty for free — and no mas," he explained. 

Well, actually not exactly, for free. He was compensated rather handsomely and now insists on a generous, heaping double-dip. Who knew the UW had this kind of extra, unclaimed cash just sitting around for the guys at the top of the pyramid?

In a bizarre moment of harmonic convergence, I actually find myself channeling none other than uber-lefty Ed Garvey,

He wants the $225,000 that Bielema would have received. How much does Alvarez make? One million dollars per year — plus his Bielema bonus.

I think this is outrageous. Barry makes a million a year and won’t coach the Rose Bowl for free, but the players will play for free. Bielema was getting $2.7 million in part because he did a good job coaching and recruiting but in part because the players played their hearts out. Win one for the Gipper? Or the coach’s 401(k)?


My old colleague Dave Begel is also unimpressed.

What this smacks of is greed, ugly, self-motivated greed. Scrooge is real and he's dressed in UW colors. Alvarez himself decided he'd be the one to get this job and pay himself all this cash....

If he wanted to be a real leader, remain a beloved figure, he should just give the money away.

There's a big issue about how UW can't afford to pay assistant coaches enough to attract the best. Well, divide that quarter million among all the assistants as a bonus.

Give it to a charity. Give it to a scholarship program. Buy a quarter million brats for the homeless football fans in Madison.

But don't take the money. Or if you have to take it, give it away.

Putting it in your pocket, when you were the one who decided you got this temp job, just smells like bad Christmas pudding.



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