The COVID-19 pandemic has brought sports to a collective stop with the NCAA and hundreds of colleges already feeling the economic impact in just a few months. Now, amid fears of the college football season being delayed, Rutgers Scarlet Knights head coach Greg Schiano became the latest marquee name that will be taking a pay cut due to the economic crisis.
Rutgers president Robert Barchi announced on Friday that senior university officials would need to take pay cuts amid a series of cost-cutting changes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the suspension of classes and athletic schedules, Rutgers is already anticipating it will see a shortfall of $200 million in revenue this year.
In an effort to ease the financial burden on the university, Schiano, athletic director Pat Hobbs, men’s basketball coach Steve Pikielli and women’s basketball coach Vivian Stringer are among the officials taking 10% pay cuts.
Schiano signed an eight-year, $32 million contract with Rutgers in December to take over his old football program and rebuild it. As part of the deal, the university agreed to give Schiano a $7.7 million pool to hire his staff and required the university to push toward building a new indoor practice facility and football operations building.
The COVID-19 pandemic could now change things significantly for Rutgers. The university revealed it saw a freeze on $73 million on state funding along with more than $50 million lost in refunding students for room and board. Barchi also recommended to the Board of Governors that a freeze be placed on tuition for undergraduates.
The economic consequences are likely similar for other colleges across the country and would be even worse if the college football season is canceled. Fortunately, there’s increasing hope and tentative plans being worked on that indicate we aren’t yet at major risk of losing the entire football season due to the pandemic.