25,000 fans attended Coach Wilson’s 2017 home opener. Ellyson Ortega, The Paisano.

It’s a big bag of money–figuratively, of course. Coach Frank Wilson’s projected 1.05 million dollars earned in 2017 certainly wouldn’t fit in a UTSA student’s backpack.

Following UTSA’s home opening beatdown of Southern and second straight win of the season, Wilson and his ‘Runners are earning their keep.

When it comes to contracts, winning is the primary factor the public considers when determining whether the paycheck is worth it, but it isn’t the only factor to weigh. Hefty contracts are an announcement of trust and they boom louder than words.

Fast success in college sports is a double-edged sword for fans. On one hand, there’s excitement and on the other, there’s anxiety– break-ups hurt, even when its the school’s head coach leaves.

Following the pay raise announcement and its approval by the UT Regents on Aug. 24, coverage of the event cited the raise as a means of retaining Wilson. San Antonio Express News described the raise as a measure to “award Wilson for a successful season–and perhaps discourage him from bolting to another school.”

The discouragement doesn’t only apply to Wilson. The raise also equates to a costly “buy out.” An interested party must make a single prepayment in order for Wilson to have no ongoing obligation to our university before hiring him.

Before Wilson’s raise, if a university opted to buy out Wilson, they’d have to pay a little over $500,000 to free him from obligation. The UnderDog Dynasty Assistant Manager and The Paisano alumnus Jared Kalmus reported that it was “one of the cheapest buy outs (he came) across,” in his coverage of Wilson’s contract extension. For comparison’s sake, it’s half of what UNT Head Coach Seth Littrell’s buyout would cost a future employer (a Texas team who tacked on as many losses as we have wins) Kalmus added.

On the other side of the coin, a costly buyout means a costly termination. Wilson’s response to his raise was a humble one, for it wasn’t simply a reward for success on the field, but an investment of trust from our university system to him.

Wilson enjoys good standing off the field. Sports Illustrated covered Wilson’s early career and highlighted moments that determined formidable character. His earliest mentioned acts were a series of constructive measures implemented during his high school coaching career which boosted his team’s GPA average by one full point.

UTSA football is weaving into the university’s campus culture. The stream of tweets from freshmen enjoying their first home opener was evident of that. With that in mind, it’s important to remember that wins matter, but so does a high standard off the field.

Further examination of our sports program comes with success. Whether members of UTSA like it or not, our team reflects our university at national level.

UTSA does not need a Baylor-esque scandal to mar our reputation. (Baylor University officials failed to adequately respond to numerous sexual assault allegations and a conviction for sexual and non-sexual assaults committed by Baylor Bears football players between the years 2012 and 2016.)

UTSA’s contract extension is more than just money. It’s an investment of trust in Wilson to steer the ship.

The ship is sailing in the right direction and the water is calm.

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