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Tennessee baseball coach’s worth is more than the Vols can pay

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Tennessee coach Tony Vitello deserves more than he’ll get in his next contract. That’s not undervaluing what the Vols’ baseball messiah has meant to UT. It just so happens there are some major financial moves being made in college athletics.

This isn’t a great time to be a coach deserving a big raise with so many other factors at hand. Good business may mean paying the Vols’ national championship coach less than what he’s worth. However, the last thing that UT’s brass wants to do is damage the Vols-Vitello relationship, so a happy medium must be struck.

After all, by all accounts, Vitello is perfect. He’s a national champion, affable and the ladies say he’s good looking. I tend to trust the ladies when it comes to such matters, so good for Vitello.

Vitello deserves a king’s ransom. However, he may get much less than that because he’s in a less popular sport than some others. Moreover, it wouldn’t be wise to pay Vitello a king’s ransom for winning the Vols’ first ever baseball national championship. Sure, it was the first men’s championship for Tennessee since the football team won it all in 1998 but here’s the problem. Football needs the money too.

Television revenue sharing is on the horizon. NIL will eventually turn into a standard model of pay-for-play by the individual colleges. And football will always be the most important thing at Tennessee. So where does that leave Vitello?

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Vanderbilt’s Tim Corbin is the top paid college baseball coach in the nation at $1.9-million per season. Vitello took home $1.5-million last season so it won’t take much to make him the highest paid college baseball coach in the country. He certainly deserves that and, in the world of college athletics, adding another $500,000 to Vitello’s contract is an easy decision. Frankly, I’m still in favor of a lifetime contract.

Does Vitello need to be in that range to feel satisfied? Only he can answer that question. His worth, however, is a bit more tangible when you compare it to football. Just one football player, like quarterback Nico Iamaleava, is reportedly being paid $2-million per season. As special as Iamaleava might be, he’s not worth as much as Vitello, who has coached the Vols for nearly a decade and could coach them for a decade more.

Iamaleava has certainly had a monstrous impact for the Vols’ publicity and helped their recruiting, but Vitello is still worth more, even though he’s in a smaller sport with less financial impact. One has to factor what he’s done and what he may do into his worth. It just so happens that there are other financial issues going on at UT and other schools.

Still, it’s time to pay Vitello, especially since he understands football is always king and seems to want to turn the Vols into a dynasty. However, perhaps Vitello could still give the Vols a little bit of a break on his next contract. The national championship was great, but let’s try to keep things just a bit in perspective before Tennessee starts promising millions of dollars with so much still undecided about vast sums of money. Let’s also remember: Tennessee football is king.

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5 Responses

  1. I can’t believe this even being questioned. Look at the things he has accomplished with the Vols! Pay him, or some Texas team will steal him away. Come on Tennessee let’s give him 2.5 mil a year !

  2. Apparently you havnt been to many baseball games and/or don’t watch them and I understand football is king but Tony V is the best thing to ever happen to Tennessee’s program, him and his last several baseball teams have single handedly grown the game of college baseball. Just look around at how many people were in Omaha and then at the parade on Tuesday to support him and his team. I also understand baseball coaches don’t make near as much as football and basketball but there is absolutely no reason at all that Danny White can’t make him the highest paid baseball coach in the country, he deserves it plus some….

  3. If The University of Tennessee doesn’t have the sense to pay Coach V what he’s worth or at least a LONG TERM contract, they’ll be whining again about we haven’t won a national championship since 2024 once Coach V is gone. The coaching carousel will begin again like what we went through with football & basketball. Winners pay so pay the winners

  4. Pay the man where was Tennessee baseball before he was hired. No where on the college baseball map, PAY the best college coach in the game!!!!

  5. I was a jock all my life but was never a big baseball fan. I Actually hated it. In the past 35 yrs. I Had never watched a full game and prob only tried a handful of times. To me it was a boring sport. That being said I have watched every TN baseball game in the past 3 yrs and have come to love it, well TN at least..Coach V is once in lifetime coach. His teams are electric to watch, exciting, and they love their coach. Coach V. deserves a lifetime contract that guarantees he’s always the highest paid coach in baseball. I predict a coach V statue and a new stadium name in the distant future. Awesome coach….generational legend….pay the man….

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