Our safari through the salary savannah of major college football concludes with the most interesting position, at least for our purposes.
A sizable number of FBS programs -- I'd estimate half -- do not employ special teams coordinators. They either split duties amongst the staff, or deputize an off-field coach to do the heavy lifting. Others designate a specific special teams coordinator, but ask him to coordinate that phase while also handling his own position(s). And then a third group employs a special teams coordinator with no other positional assignment -- he shows up to work each day to chew bubble gum and coach special teams, and he's all out of bubble gum.
It's a fascinating dichotomy. One group of head coaches doesn't find it necessary to employ a specifically-designated special teams coordinator, and another employs an assistant just to coach special teams, paying him half a million or more to do so.
Or a lot more.
Texas's Jeff Banks maintained his lead as the nation's highest-paid assistant who coaches special teams, but his lead decreased. In fact, last year's runner-up, Florida State's John Papuchis, is now in seventh place. Above him is the nation's highest-paid assistant who only coaches special teams: LSU's Brian Polian, who will earn $625,000 on Brian Kelly's new staff.
Unlike other positions, the asterisk designates a coach who doesn't have an additional on-the-field responsibility beyond coaching special teams.
1. Jeff Banks, Texas -- $1.05 million
2. Mike Reed, Clemson -- $750,000
3. Joe Lorig, Oregon -- $650,000
4. Brian Polian, LSU -- $625,000*
5. Jay Harbaugh, Michigan -- $600,000
6. Ross Els, Michigan State -- $575,000
7. John Papuchis, Florida State -- $550,000
8. Eric Schmidt, Washington -- $525,000
9. Scott Fountain, Arkansas -- $515,000*
10. Stu Holt, Virginia Tech -- $500,000
10. Kenny Perry, Texas Tech -- $500,000
10. Larry Porter, North Carolina -- $500,000
10. Sharrieff Shah, Utah -- $500,000
14. Coleman Hutzler, Alabama -- $495,000
15. John Settle, Kentucky -- $475,000
16. Pete Lembo, South Carolina -- $465,000*
17. LeVar Woods, Iowa -- $440,000*
18. Erik Link, Missouri -- $425,000
19. Eric Mele, Mississippi State -- $415,000*
20. Bill Busch, Nebraska -- $400,000*
20. Jeff Koonz, West Virginia -- $400,000
22. Todd Goebbel, NC State -- $370,000
23. Mike Ekeler, Tennessee -- $350,000
24. Rob Wenger, Minnesota -- $320,000
25. Ben Miller, Illinois -- $315,000
Missing: Marty Biagi (Ole Miss); Roc Bellantoni (Auburn); Keith Gaither (Virginia); Karl Maslowski (Purdue); Nick Whitworth (Washington State);