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HER POINT- When is enough money enough?
by Dawn Brandvold
Dec 20, 2004 | 288 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
There is an old adage that says, "You are what you eat." (Not a pleasant thought at this time of year.) On that note, there seems to be a feeling that "You are what you earn." And obviously some feel they can never earn enough. Professional athletes and entertainers have long been paid excessive amounts for amusing the masses. Now it seems as if college coaches are entering the ranks of the highly paid.

Considering that the President of the U.S. makes a couple of hundred thousand a year, isn't it a bit confusing that the University of Utah is paying its new head coach $750,000?

It could be argued that a successful football coach is able to bring not only excitement to a university, but donor dollars and gate receipts go up as well. However, with college tuition increasing dramatically in the state of Utah and restrictions on Pell Grants tightening yearly, it is a questionable practice to pay a football coach such an exorbitant amount while the average college student is skimping on the Ramen noodles for an education.

There are those who measure success by the amount they earn. To those of us with modest incomes and happy lives, this train of thought makes little sense. When is enough money enough? Several years ago John Stockton was offered some $8 million to play for Miami. With hardly a breath, he declined the offer remarking that he was making enough money in Utah to meet the needs of his family.

Urban Meyer, possibly the most successful coach in Utah history recently signed a $14- million, seven-year deal. He had long stated that one of his life dreams was to land the head job at Notre Dame. He barely paid attention to their offer, so quick was he to grab the bigger bucks from Florida, stating that he had a family and the future of his three children to consider. Somehow I think that the Meyer children could live happy, secure lives on less than $2 million a year, especially if their father demonstrated that when a dream presents itself, you count your blessings, not the dollars.

Numberless professional athletes measure their worth by the amount they are paid, getting highly offended when another player signs a bigger deal. It seems as though college coaches are going down that same path. Teach your children to follow their dreams, live productive honest lives, and if by chance they make huge amounts of money, then use the excess to enrich the lives of others. A life well lived cannot be measured by the amount of wealth a person accumulates.

Raised in Davis County, Brandvold is employed in the financial industry-and proud to be a Utah Democrat.

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