News from the Tennessee Valley Sports

Assistants' pay at Alabama tops in the league

By Josh Cooper 340-2460

TUSCALOOSA — As with its head football coach, The University of Alabama is paying a high price for its assistant coaches as well.

According to documents sent to The Decatur Daily through an open-records request, the total for Nick Saban's on-field coaching staff is $2.245 million, pending approval by the school's board of trustees.

This reportedly would make Saban's assistants the highest paid in the Southeastern Conference.

Defensive coordinator Kevin Steele and offensive line coach Joe Pendry are the highest paid assistant coaches. Both will make $350,000 this season while working for Saban, who has an eight-year contract that pays him an average of $4 million a year.

Defensive backs coach Kirby Smart will make $275,000 and offensive coordinator Major Applewhite will make $250,000 this season.

The rest of the list includes tight ends and special teams coach Ron Middleton ($230,000), running backs coach Burton Burns ($220,000), outside linebackers coach Lance Thompson ($210,000), defensive line coach Bo Davis ($190,000) and wide receivers coach Curt Cignetti ($170,000).

According to an article in The Columbus (Ga.) Ledger-Enquirer, LSU had the highest cumulative salary among SEC assistant coaches at $1.88 million, while Auburn's staff makes $1.87 million. The newspaper reported the league average is $1.55 million.

Five Tide coaching support staff members make an additional $541,550.

The list includes director of player personnel William Collins ($140,000), strength coach Scott Cochran ($120,000), director of player development Willie Martin ($105,000), director of football operations Todd Alles Sr. ($96,300) and director of player development Jeremy Pruitt ($80,250).

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