LARNED — Trot out Vanna White and Pat Sajak.
Let’s play WHEEL OF FORTUNE!
There are fortunes galore in the sports world, some being won and some being lost. Either way, the numbers are mind-numbing.
SPIN THAT WHEEL!
For the upcoming fiscal year, Kansas State is projecting an athletic budget of $65.7 million.
That is a 49-percent increase from just five years ago!
It’s is getting very expensive ‘keeping up with the Joneses!’
Former Kansas State Wildcat and now Green Bay Packer Jordy Nelson just signed a contract extension that will bring him $39 million over four years! His quarterback and friend Aaron Rodgers quipped, “now he can go buy all of the Kansas farm land he wants to.”
Hey, all Kansans are happy for this guy, including Jayhawks fans!
Every once in a while when you are playing WHEEL OF FORTUNE, you hit the ‘Bankrupt’ marker and you might toss the NCAA’s Legislative Council a bankrupt marker after they voted to expand the meal allowance for all athletes.
That move occurred after Connecticut guard Shabazz Napier complained during the Final Four that he sometimes went to bed ‘starving’ because he couldn’t afford food.
Penn State hired Sandy Barbour as their athletic director just a month after she left her California-Berkley post. She signed a contract that will pay her in the $1 million a year category.
She said she intends to bring a ‘student-first’ approach to the job.
Uh, Sandy, I think at $1 million per, you and the students aren’t going to be in quite that arrangement.
Speaking of hitting Bankrupt on the wheel, 78 percent of NFL players go bankrupt or experience financial distress within two years of retirement.
The same fate awaits former NBA stars.
Despite having their wheel of fortune spit out big fortunes, most of these guys don’t know how to hang on to it, how to manage it.
In the NBA, the owners, as well as the players, sometimes end up in financial trouble.
The Brooklyn Nets are in murky financial waters and they are estimated to have lost over $144 million in the past year.
Their Wheel of Fortune was spitting out a $102.6 million payroll last year. That’s what happens when you pay $90 million in luxury tax by signing aging former ‘superstars’ and it doesn’t work.
On the other side of that Wheel of Fortune, Shelly Sterling convinced a judge to let her sell her and her husband’s (Donald Sterling of foot in mouth disease) Los Angeles Clippers basketball team to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer for a cool $2 Billion.
Make that $ 2 BILLION!
Every school in the Big 12 Conference hit Vanna White’s Jackpot this past year as the conference dished out over $23 million to each from television rights.
Time was $23 million would run an entire athletic department at a major school but no more!
Larned native Bruce Vaughn didn’t hit a Wheel of Fortune but he did turn in an excellent tournament in the British Senior Open as he ended up tied for 13th place.
He put a nice check in his pocket.
Something about playing with those Brits that brings out the best in Bruce!
Speaking of the Brits, British author G.K. Chesterton once said, “To be clever enough to get all that money, one must be stupid enough to want it!”
Remember that when you spin your WHEEL OF FORTUNE.
Charles Tabler is a contributing writer from Larned.