When Nick Saban wants to go on vacation, the University of Alabama is obligated to provide a private plane. That is one of the perks of the coach's contract, which was approved in a unanimous vote Thursday by the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees. Let us remind you that a recent Education Week magazine study ranked Alabama 45th nationally in giving public schoolchildren a chance for success and 47th on an achievement index that includes performance on tests in reading and math, graduation rates and other student performance indicators. Thus the unanimous vote should come as no surprise.
Saban's deal is for eight years and $32 million, making him the highest-paid college football coach in history — at least among public schools. The Birmingham News reports that Notre Dame's Crewcut Charlie Weis is believed to have a 10-year contract that will pay him in the neighborhood of $40 million. Fat city!
In addition, Alabama spent an estimated $37,667 on its 38-day search, with $35,000 of that going to consultant Chuck Neinas. For our earlier report on Neinas' racket, click here. Can't say we didn't warn you, Alabama.