OU’s Stoops Brothers Highest Paid Coach, Coordinator in Big 12


Bob Stoops is one of the country’s highest paid college football coaches, and OU’s Stoops brothers represent the highest paid coach-coordinator combination in the Big 12 and certainly one of if not the highest in the entire college landscape.

Data gathered by the Dallas Morning News from open public records reveals that Bob Stoops is the highest-paid head coach in the Big 12, making a guaranteed $6 million a year in salary and other wage benefits. When you factor in what brother Mike makes – a reported &905,000 with the potential of an additional $270,000 in bonus payments – the Sooner Stoops brothers are by far the best paid head coach-coordinator within the Big 12 Conference.

You might ask: Why wouldn’t one of the country’s premier football coaching assignments pay top dollar? If you buy in to that line of thinking, a logical follow-on question is: Is the Sooners’ performance on the field commensurate with the financial investment in its top coaches?

One quick way to respond to point to the fact that Oklahoma has not played to anything less than a sell-out, capacity crowd at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium since Bob Stoops assumed the coaching reigns as the Sooners’ 21st head football coach, but just the fifth in the last 42 seasons, in 1999.

No one would argue that the lifeblood of any college football program is recruiting and making sure that the talent flow is ample enough to fill position needs and sustain present and future success on the field. Former Sooner quarterback Cale Gundy serves as director of recruiting for the OU football program in addition to his current duties coaching the wide receivers, and he is well compensated for those responsibilities.

Oct 4, 2014; Fort Worth, TX, USA; Oklahoma Sooners defensive coordinator Mike Stoops prior to the game against the TCU Horned Frogs at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Gundy, who is in his 17th season on Stoops’ coaching staff, makes a current guaranteed salary figure of $350,000 a year. According to the financial information obtained by the Dallas News, Gundy makes $35,000 more a year than Brian Jean-Mary, the person who holds the head recruiting job for the Texas Longhorns.

The guaranteed salaries for most every assistant on Bob Stoops staff are very competitive for a nationally recognized program such as Oklahoma’s, but the bonus potential for Stoops and his assistants can add up to quite a lucrative total compensation package, the Dallas News reports. As an example, OU athletic director Joe Castiglione makes a reported salary of $1.2 million, but he can pull in up to another $700,000 from football alone.

Another interesting piece of information contained in the financial information disclosed by the main Dallas metropolitan newspaper shows that Bob Stoops’ maximum bonus potential of around $830,000 is more than the guaranteed salary of new Kansas head coach David Beaty.

Circling back to the question of whether what the University of Oklahoma is paying the Stoops brothers and the other Sooner football assistants is worth the investment, I submit that the record speaks for itself.

Before Bob Stoops arrived on the scene, OU went a very un-Sooner-like 12-22 in the combined first three seasons of the Big 12 and was just 8-16 in conference play.

Under Stoops, the Sooners have won a national championship (2000), captured eight conference championships, more than double the number of league titles by any other Big 12 team, and finished lower than third in the conference or divisional standings only once. Unfortunately, that one time was last season, when OU came in fourth in the conference standings behind TCU, Baylor and Kansas State.

You can also add nine top-10 finishes in the final Associate Press college football poll and five of those in the nation’s top five.

Outside of Alabama under Nick Saban, I don’t think any other team in the country can boast the resume that Bob Stoops and his coaches have put together on the Oklahoma plains. Does that justify the highly generous financial packages? I say yes, but there are probably many Sooner fans who strongly disagree with that position.

If the Sooner football decline in 2014 continues into the 2015 season, it’s a pretty safe bet that there will be an increasing outcry over what the OU Board of Regents has agreed to compensate Stoops and his coaches and the payoff Sooner fans and the university are receiving – or not – in return.

In terms of bodies in the seats, clearly there is no appreciable drop off there. But even that can change if the balance of wins and losses shifts further to the “L” side of the ledger.

More from Oklahoma Sooners

Oklahoma football has had a number of outstanding seasons under Bob Stoops. No one would deny that. But you can’t live in the past. As good as it has been for the Sooners, it means nothing moving forward.  All that matters is the here and now and the building blocks that are put in place to bridge to success in the future.

It all comes down to the oft-used cliché: What have you done for me lately?

That is the smoldering issue that Sooner fans are looking to Stoops & Company to address in a big way come this fall.