Larry Scott’s annual pay for 2016 was revealed a week ago, via a report from USA Today’s Steve Berkowitz. Another chunk of information has arrived via Berkowitz, and the results are rather eye-opening.
The Pac-12 commissioner, who was credited with nearly $4.8 million in compensation per the conference’s federal tax return, makes more than any Power Five commissioner — by a wide margin.
Other commissioners' pay for 2016 calendar year:
Pac-12's Larry Scott: $4.8 million
Big 12's Bob Bowlsby: $3.1 million, including 205K reported on prior tax docs
B1G's Jim Delany: $2.5 million
SEC's Greg Sankey: $1.9 million https://t.co/BXYl7RXfqO
— Steve Berkowitz (@ByBerkowitz) May 16, 2018
The most stark contrast is between Scott and the SEC’s Greg Sankey. With a perennial representative in the lucrative College Football Playoff, it would seem Sankey would at least land near the $2.5 million range, but his compensation number is also provided from his first full calendar year on the job, meaning a raise should be expected in the near future. When considering TV revenue, it becomes even more intriguing.
This from Berkowitz on May 8:
The Pac-12 reported last week that its total revenue for a fiscal year ending June 30, 2017 was just over $509 million, up from $488 million for fiscal 2016. The new total left the Pac-12 trailing the SEC by more than $141 million for fiscal 2017.
The new return showed some additional details, including the conference’s revenue from television rights. It was just over $326 million for fiscal 2017, up about 4% from the prior year’s $313.8 million.
The SEC reported on its new return that it received just over $409 million in TV and radio rights fees for a fiscal year ending Aug. 3, 2017.
A difference of more than $80 million in television revenue between the SEC and Pac-12, and a nearly $3 million difference in the opposite direction in commissioner compensation raises an eyebrow at the very least. A $600,000 increase in pay from 2015 to 2016 was just the latest boost for Scott, who’s made just over $24.8 million in compensation from the conference, and comes on the heels of news that the conference’s self-owned television network was undergoing restructuring due to financial issues.
While that latter portion also has to do with a stalemate with DirecTV, when combined with the news of Scott’s pay, it’s simply not the best look for the conference — especially one that has struggled to compete with the other Power Five conferences in the money sports (football, men’s basketball) in recent years.