According to one college football writer, Tennessee head coach Butch Jones is one of the most overpaid head coaches in all of college football.
David Kenyon of Bleacher Report released a list of who he believes are the top six most overpaid head coaches in the NCAA, and three SEC coaches found themselves on that list. And Butch Jones is one of them.
Kenyon’s criteria for the list included a base cutoff line for any coach with a career winning percentage of .700 or better. Kenyon added that a win-loss record doesn’t always tell the whole story, as coaches who just arrived at a new school or those at smaller schools with lower expectations are also exempt.
“Comparable coaches based on salary and conference affiliation, current tenure, recent seasons, predecessor success (if recent) and career record factored into the list,” wrote Kenyon. “Conference and national championships were also considered.”
The article lists those coaches who are exempt from the list according to the above criteria then lists the coaches who are in danger of being added to the list in the near future. Then the actual list begins.
According to Kenyon, Butch Jones is the No. 4 most overpaid head coach in all of college football.
Kenyon states Jones’ $4.1 million annual salary, which ranks him 18th nationally and ninth in the SEC, is too much for the fifth-year Vol head coach. Kenyon writes that Jones has come very close to silencing his detractors since taking over as Tennessee’s head coach, but adds that “Tennessee hasn’t quite been champions of anything except for life under him.”
Although he doesn’t go into specifics, Kenyon says “late-game collapses have plagued the Vols throughout his tenure,” hearkening back to losses to Oklahoma, Florida, and Arkansas in 2015 and potentially to losses to South Carolina and Vanderbilt in 2016 as well.
Kenyon says Jones’ .588 winning percentage in four years at Tennessee places him 23rd in the top 25 highest-paid head coaches returning for the 2017 season.
Jones has led the Vols to a 9-4 record in back-to-back seasons after the Vols won seven or fewer games in seven straight seasons before that. But the SEC East has been there for the taking for the Vols the last two seasons, and Jones has yet to deliver a division title while at Tennessee. And that’s caused apprehension among Vol fans.
Kentucky’s Mark Stoops (3rd) and Arkansas’s Bret Bielema (1st) are the two other SEC coaches on the list.