The literature examining executive and upper management compensation has looked at a variety of factors. Within sport, coaches are equivalent to these positions, with one of the major factors determining total compensation being on-field performance. However, little is known on how expectations of on-field performance compared with actual performance affect compensation. The purpose of this study is to analyze the effect of performance expectations on Division I–Football Bowl Subdivision head football coaches’ total compensation. Using data from 2006 to 2013, compensation increases when on-field performance expectations are exceeded. The impact of an additional on-field win relative to performance expectations is between 5.0 and 5.5% in terms of additional compensation. However, no statistically significant effect exists when comparing coaches at automatic qualifying versus nonautomatic qualifying schools. In addition, off-field measures of performance as well as individual and university characteristics affect total compensation.
Brian P. Soebbing is with Tourism and Hospitality Management, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA. Pamela Wicker is with the Department of Sport Economics and Sport Management, German Sport University Cologne, Germany. Nicholas M. Watanabe is with Parks, Recreation, & Tourism, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO.