Add the Western Kentucky football head coach to the growing list of individuals in the sports world who are tightening their financial belts amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
On the first day of this month, Iowa State announced a one-year reduction in pay and bonuses for its coaches. Louisville soon followed suit. As did Wake Forest, Missouri and Washington State. Athletic directors at Oregon (HERE) and Wyoming (HERE) are taking cuts in pay. Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, who reportedly made north of $5 million a year ago, is taking a 20% pay cut. Scott’s Big 12 counterpart, Bob Bowlsby, announced pay cuts for himself and the conference’s staff.
That list has officially grown. And will continue to grow, no doubt.
Friday, WKU announced that a handful of its top coaches and administrators have voluntarily agreed to take a 10% cut in pay. Included in that group is Western Kentucky football head coach Tyson Helton.
Helton made $800,000 in 2019 according to the USA Today coaches salary database. A 10% cut would’ve knocked that salary down to $72,000.
In addition to Helton, athletic director Todd Stewart, men’s basketball coach Rick Stansbury will take the same percentage cut. WKU president Timothy Caboni will also take a 10% salary reduction. That money, though, will go toward the Opportunity Fund for WKU families struggling amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
“The American spirit is people rallying around each other in times of need,” a statement from Stewart began. “In our lives, all of us are likely to need help from others at some point. This event has been unprecedented and its impact on so many has been staggering. We are in a position where we can do this, and I know many people throughout the nation are making similar sacrifices. We all look forward to better days ahead.”