Stanford really loves their head football coach, and they have the tax returns to prove it.
As Stanford is a private institution, they are not required to reveal any employment contracts, including football coaches. However, universities such as Stanford have been required to provide copies of their federal income tax returns, which reveals the compensation received by various employees, including David Shaw.
And, based on those returns by way of USA Today, Shaw pulled in nearly $4.1 million for the 2014 calendar year. The paper writes that total is “the highest for any Stanford employee not only in 2014, but also in any one of the seven years under the IRS’ current reporting system.” The previous high-water compensation mark was the $3.6 million John Powers earned in 2012 as the president of the management company in charge of the university’s endowment program.
Not only that, but Shaw’s 2014 salary was nearly double the previous year. In 2013, again according to federal tax returns, Shaw made $2.2 million. Te $4.1 million figure was nearly quadruple what his predecessor, Jim Harbaugh, made in 2010.
Shaw’s 2014 salary was also more than any other Pac-12 coach made in 2015, according to USA Today‘s coaching salary database. The $3.4 million of Washington’s Chris Petersen and $3.35 million of UCLA’s Jim Mora are the only ones in Shaw’s neighborhood. Like Stanford, USC is private school and not listed in that database. Mora received a contract extension last month, a tweaked agreement that did not include a raise.
Shaw’s 2015 salary won’t be available until 2017, while his 2016 salary won’t be known until 2018. USA Today explains he details of the federal tax laws as it pertains to college coaches as well as that lag time:
Like other private colleges, Stanford is set up as a non-profit organization. That means it must annually file a federal tax return that includes information about the pay of its officers, directors and other key university-wide leaders. It also must disclose pay information for its five most highly compensated employees who do not fall into one of those three categories.
Although most of the information on a non-profit’s tax return covers a fiscal year that usually involves parts of two calendar years, the IRS requires that the compensation reporting cover the most recently completed calendar year. Due to the complexity of their returns, large colleges and universities routinely take filing extensions that result in a significant time lag between the period covered by their most recent return and the date they file.
In Stanford’s case, the return it filed Friday covers a fiscal year that ended Aug. 31, 2015. That makes 2014 the most recently completed calendar year and, thus, the one used for reporting Shaw’s compensation.
In his five years at his alma mater, Shaw has led the Cardinal to a 54-14 record, including a 36-9 mark in Pac-12 play. Stanford has won the conference championship three times the past four seasons (2012, 2013, 2015) and a pair of Rose Bowls in that span.