Out of 58 Power 5 athletic directors for whom data was collected, 25 had contracts awarding at least $1 million in total 2020-21 compensation, according to a report compiled by USA Today and Syracuse’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, and analyzed by AthleticDirectorU.
In other words, at least 40% of Power 5 athletic directors were members of the million-dollar club last year.
- Four athletic directors topped $2 million in total compensation.
- Seven SEC athletic directors made at least $1 million, the most of any Power 5 conference (6 Big Ten, 5 ACC, 3 Pac-12, 3 Big 12).
- Every AD had a contract for at least $500,000.
The survey couldn’t provide data for four private schools: Boston College, Miami, USC, and Stanford.
There’s one caveat to this data: While it reflects the money ADs were contracted to earn, some took pay cuts due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Michigan AD Warde Manuel, for example, had a contract for $1.5 million. He ranks 10th among current ADs. Even though he took a 10% pay cut, he still would have made well over $1 million.
And some of the pay cuts may not have been executed completely. “As a practical matter, many of the pay cuts were implemented in a series of contract amendments which extended, and then later reduced, the original reduction period,” WME agent Robert Lattinville, who wrote the survey, told FOS.