HEY, WILLIE! Mullen + McElwain + Muschamp = MONEY … big money for Gators

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HEY, WILLIE!

If news reports are correct, the University of Florida has paid its last three fired football coaches more than a combined $25 million to go away.

In TV dollars, that’s not much. Have the Bull Gators always been in charge in Gainesville?

DAN P

HEY, DAN!

Our Research Department confirms the news reports: $6.3 million to Will Muschamp in 2014, $7.5 million to Jim McElwain in 2017, $12 million (over six years) to recently dismissed Dan Mullen.

Yes, those numbers get your attention, and might even raise bushy eyebrows up in the Saturday suites. But I’ve been told the Bull Gators won’t be switching from aged cheddar to Cheez Whiz on their halftime cracker tray.

Dan Mullen's $12 million buyout ran Florida's total to $25 million for its past three coaches' early departures.

Dan Mullen’s $12 million buyout ran Florida’s total to $25 million for its past three coaches’ early departures.

Also, for comparison’s sake, Auburn damn near gave that much to just one departing coach — Gus Malzahn’s 2020 parting gift was $21.4 million, which means he took a pay cut to return to work as UCF’s head coach (five years, $11.5 million). The upgraded Gus Bus is a limited edition with tow package, leather seats and moonroof.

But Gus only got half of that right away, with the other half set to arrive in four annual installments. And you know what that means: 2021’s highest paid college football coach was Muschamp, who never drew up a game plan. The University of South Carolina negotiated a January lump-sum buyout of $12.9 million for Muschamp, who therefore out-earned Nick Saban by $2.3 million.

Calm down, it’s only money.

BALL COACHES: More than ever, college football’s Coaching Carousel is at a dizzying pace | KEN WILLIS

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HEY, WILLIE!

My current top four: 1. Georgia, 2. Michigan, 3. Cincinnati, 4. Notre Dame.

1. Georgia, 2. Alabama, 3. Michigan, 4. Cincinnati.

HEY, WILLIE!

As an old northern Minnesota boy I was surprised to see your comment on Saturday’s game at Beaver Stadium in Bemidji.

Having competed at that stadium, I agree with your assessment of its beauty, but I’m curious about your knowledge of its mere existence.

HAL, FORMER ST. CLOUD HUSKY

HEY, HUSKY HAL!

It was a busy week for the Boys in Research, who provided the aerial maps as proof of Lake Bemidji’s lovely backdrop. And what’s this? For what it’s worth, I got the pick right — Bemidji’s Beavers fell, and fell hard, to the Orediggers from the Colorado School of Mines.

HEY, WILLIE!

Just have to say it. Your column (Saturday) was a masterpiece. In points of interest regarding Golden, Colorado, I’m surprised you chose Buffalo Bill’s grave over the brewery Adolph Coors founded down the hill.

DAN F

HEY, DAN!

Good point, but then again, if not for Buffalo Bill Cody’s heroics, young Adolph might’ve remained a Prussian stone cutter.

HEY, WILLIE!

Why is it here in Daytona we get the Jags’ away games but not home games on TV?.

They are only 90 miles up the road. I lived in Tarpon Springs outside of Tampa, and they showed away and home games on TV. Doesn’t make sense to me.

PETE

HEY, PETE!

I hope you’re happy; you ignited another blast of research. Thankfully, it was short-lived.

I got two pages into the NFL’s policy on regional broadcasts and blackout rules and another few lines into the exceptions to those rules, then looked for something easier to decode: The United States Tax Code.

There’s one useful online tool (506sports.com) that might give you some insight, as well advance notice on what games will and won’t be available to you unless you hit the nearest sports bar and nurse that platter of nachos for four quarters.

— Reach Ken Willis at [email protected]

This article originally appeared on The Daytona Beach News-Journal: Florida Gators go big with going-away parties | HEY, WILLIE!

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