Crean getting richer with each IU win

Indiana University men's basketball coach Tom Crean is having a good year financially.

And with every tournament victory, he’s getting richer.

It's funny how a winning season can change things. Just seven months ago, more than a few IU fans were talking about the possibility of Crean's termination. Far fewer are chattering about that now.

And like the contracts of many college basketball coaches, Crean’s agreement—signed in 2008—is laden with bonuses for each postseason win.

Crean, whose annual base salary is a tick over $3 million, already has earned a $125,000 bonus for winning the Big Ten regular season title. That’s a lot more than if his Hoosiers had won the Big Ten tournament. That bonus prize is $50,000—which he did not collect thanks to Michigan.

Crean earned another $25,000 for getting his team into the NCAA tournament. March Madness indeed.

IU’s coach scooped up another $25,000 for his team’s win in the first round over Chattanooga and another $35,000 for the big victory Saturday over Kentucky.

So far, Crean has scored a total of $210,000 in bonuses for his team’s on-court performance.

But the big payday could still be ahead—if the Hoosiers can pull off an upset or two. If IU beats No. 1 seed North Carolina on Friday, Crean will earn another $50,000. And if the Hoosiers make it to the Final Four, Crean snags another $125,000 on top of that.

Crean wouldn't earn anything additional simply for making it to the national championship game, but if IU wins it all, Crean gets another $250,000 bonus.

And if that happens, Crean will have scored a total of $635,000 in bonuses. That’s roughly 22 percent of his base salary. Most people would be pretty happy with that if they exceeded expectations on their annual review.

Crean also can earn extra cash for his team’s academic prowess—but that pales in comparison for what he gets if the team wins on the court.

If Crean’s team has a graduation rate of at least 60 percent, he gets $5,000. He earns $10,000 if it’s at least 70 percent, $15,000 if it’s at least 80 percent and $20,000 if it’s 90 percent or more.

If the Hoosiers have a team grade point average between 3.0 and 3.3, Crean earns a $5,000 bonus. He gets $10,000 if it’s between 3.3 and 3.5 and $15,000 if it’s 3.5 or higher.

Crean also can earn a bonus of between $5,000 and $20,000 for the team’s academic progress rate as calculated by the NCAA. The APR is a formula that accounts for the eligibility and retention of each student-athlete for each academic term. It’s a bit convoluted, and Crean should probably get a bonus for just understanding how it’s calculated.

Notre Dame Coach Mike Brey’s contract is almost surely as full of on-court bonuses as Crean’s. But because Notre Dame is a private institution, the terms of his contract are not public. Notre Dame plays Wisconsin on Friday, and the winner of that game plays the winner of the IU-North Carolina game.

Who knows who will win this coming week. But a big payday is certainly in the offing for somebody.

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