New Jersey congressman wants to know if Brian Kelly’s LSU contract violates tax code | LSU

A New Jersey congressman is concerned that the big contract awarded to new LSU football coach Brian Kelly may not comply with the tax code, and he sent a letter to University President William Tate IV asking him to respond to Questions.

Rep. Bill Pascrell, a Democrat, sent the letter on Friday regarding his concerns the school had awarded Kelly a $ 95 million contract while operating under tax-exempt status.

In a press release, Pascrell said he sent a similar letter to the president of USC, questioning the size of the contract recently awarded to Lincoln Riley. Although Riley’s contract has not been made public, the Los Angeles Times and other publications have put the figure at nearly $ 110 million.

New football coach Brian Kelly and LSU have struck a deal that makes him the highest-paid coach at a public university in the country, according to a list of conditions obtained Tuesday night by The Advocate via a public registration request.

Pascrell, who serves as chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight subcommittee, said he wrote the letter to LSU asking for “information on how the lucrative track and field program of the The university promotes the educational objectives for which LSU enjoys tax exemption “.

“This week, on the day of the national signing, thousands of young students agreed to play sports for free for college programs by paying literally tens of millions of dollars a year and providing free homes to their coaches,” he said. the congressman said in a statement. “These exorbitant contracts with sports coaches from schools that enjoy federal tax-exempt status demand answers for the taxpayers who help fund these institutions.”

LSU and USC aren’t the only schools giving huge contracts to their football coaches. Nick Saban earns $ 9.7 million a year in Alabama and Mel Tucker of State of Michigan got a contract extension in November that will net him $ 95 million over 10 years.

Mark Finebaum, Pascrell’s communications director, said LSU and USC were honored because “it was a matter of punctuality.”

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“It’s not unique to LSU, football or the Div. 1, ”said Finebaum. “As it turns out, these stories have been erupting over the past two weeks. As a committee, we focus a lot on tax reform issues.

Pascrell pointed out in his letter to LSU that Kelly will be the highest paid college coach at a public university. A longevity bonus will make his total compensation at least $ 100 million on his 10-year contract.

“Without question, most of the activities LSU undertakes advance the university’s exemption goals,” Pascrell said in his letter to Tate. “However, recent reports on the compensation LSU will pay to its current and former football coaches have raised serious concerns as to whether the university is operating under its tax-exempt status.”

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While college athletes over the past year have had the opportunity to financially benefit from their name, image and likeness, Pascrell challenged the financial gap between coaches and their players.

“Student-athletes put in a tremendous amount of time and effort as a team member, but it’s the coaches who benefit generously from their work,” Pascrell said in his letter. “These issues are also not limited to Division I football programs. Men’s basketball programs also deserve close scrutiny, given the compensation paid to coaches.

At the end of Pascrell’s letter, he provided a list of 25 questions the LSU administration wanted answered, including information on how Kelly’s salary compares to other college employees.

An LSU spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Pascrell’s letter.

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