According to Forbes, ND is the second most-valuable college football program in the country. We take in over $80 million per year in revenue and turn a profit close to $50 million. We have extended the NBC contract to run through 2025; it pays a reported $15 million per year. The ten-year Under Armour deal made us the flagship Under Armour team, and will pay more than $90 million, including equity in the company.
Those are some of our financial levers. We also are among the top 20 universities in America, and ND owns international centers in London, Rome, Beijing, Dublin, and Jerusalem. A Notre Dame education is now sold for a rack rate of over $62,000/year. ND's undergraduate experience is elite, across the board.
These are not impediments. They are resources, and we should leverage them with all we have.
1. Admissions, Academics, and Discipline. When we hire our next coach, we should sell him on the entire university. Statistically, nearly everyone who comes to ND stays and graduates with a high-value degree.
That does not just go for the players you recruit. Here is a form. Fill in the names of your children, your nieces, and your nephews. If they graduate in the top third of their high school classes, they're in -- whether you work here or not. The same privilege extends to your staff's kids.
Furthermore, we should defer to the staff on evaluations of all qualifying players. If they clear the NCAA threshold, you alone will make the final determination of each player's fitness for this university. This goes for high school prospects and those attending junior colleges. We will increase our academic-assistance staff and resources as needed.
This comes with a string attached: if a player is expelled or suspended for conduct or academic reasons, the coaching staff may not replace his scholarship until the date at which it would have expired. And every player must meet the progress-toward-graduation criteria to remain eligible. The coaches know these players better than ND's administration can, and they are the appropriate judge of their fitness as students and athletes. The risk of a bad decision is theirs.
Staff character testimony and input will be formally incorporated into our disciplinary process, but the final determinations of all conduct matters shall remain with Student Affairs.
2. Compensation. Football is valuable to ND, and the coaches deserve to share in the value they create. We can and should make every effort to cut the head coach in on the Under Armour and/or NBC deals. This could be a flat percentage of the annual cut, a gift of shares, or some contingency (bonuses for games that exceed a certain draw). We expect wins, and they will be highly incentivized to win. The incentive-heavy contract will pay royally for top-20 wins, top-10 wins, playoff participation, and championships. If you win big at Notre Dame, no coach in America will be more highly paid.
3. Additional Issues. The head coach helms the second-most financially valuable arm of this school, and he is entitled to access and improve upon Notre Dame property. We will work with the head coach regarding all requests for capital improvements, including improvements to practice facilities, nutritional programs, player lounges, and coaching offices.
A private jet will be made available, at the head coach's discretion, for any and all uses. Personal use must be itemized for tax purposes, but that too is possible. Notre Dame-owned property along Lake Michigan and in Chicago will be available for personal and official use.
Do know that we expect our student-athletes to be students and athletes, living among their fellow students, attending class, and developing as people. At the same time, we trust our hiring process. We also recognize the unique demands of college football and the staff's singular ability to influence these young men. This is both your program and our school.