With the NFL coaching carousel set in motion, it got me wondering why we don't see more pro coaches make lateral moves to the college ranks, especially head coaches. It's not strictly about money. The average NFL head coach salary this year was $4.6M (per coacheshotseat.com), compared to an average of $3.5M among the top-30 highest paid NCAA football coaches (per USA Today). (What's a cool million anyway? Just another Porsche 918 Spyder for a guy like me. I'll show you my sweet new U-M plates later).
But seriously, we've seen our share of Weisses and O'Briens and even Sabans move from NFL coordinators to college bosses, but the Mattisons who go from coordinator to coordinator or head coach to head coach from NFL to NCAA seem less common.
Is there a clear reason for this? Are college jobs just not as esteemed? Or maybe way too much work for the same money when you factor in recruiting, schmoozing boosters, etc.? Will this change now that college coach salaries are ballooning like track-home prices in 2006?
I would think that someone like Schwartz or Leslie Frazier would be a dynamite college head coach candidate. Recruits seem to really like the idea of signing up to play for a guy who has coached in the NFL and knows what it takes to get there. I'd be throwing money at Frazier if I were Texas or Penn State (. . . or Michigan? <ducks>).