Michigan’s athletic department made a sweet $10 million this week, with one minor string attached. The Wolverines received the gift from J. Ira and Nicki Harris, as an endowment for the head football coach position. Therefore, Brady Hoke is now not just the head coach at Michigan, but the J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Head Football Coach. Yay?
While many may snicker at the athletic department seemingly monetizing anything they can, this is a smart move at the end of the day. I doubt there is a single athletic department in the country that would turn down a $10 million dollar gift, even if it means throwing a silly title on their head coaching position. If you’re still dismayed by the rampant commercialization of college sports, it really is time to accept reality. It’s a huge business and businesses don’t turn down free money.
After all, more money means better facilities, higher paid coaches and a stronger program. Michigan is not the first program to endow a coaching position, with Northwestern and Stanford among those who have beat them to the punch. It’s just an easy way to pump money into a program for AD Dave Brandon, while also making donors feel special.
And if any Michigan fan is still upset over this, just know that Michigan State is also trying to endow their head football coach position, but theirs is only worth $5 million. Therefore, Michigan is obviously twice as good as Michigan State. Right?
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