The Lindsay Whalen Contract is Straight Out of the Bargain Bin

Lindsay Whalen was introduced as the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers women’s basketball coach alongside athletic director Mark Coyle on Friday, April 13, 2018 at Williams Arena in Minneapolis, Minn. (AARON LAVINSKY – STAR TRIBUNE)

Lindsay Whalen was introduced as the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers women’s basketball coach alongside athletic director Mark Coyle on Friday, April 13, 2018 at Williams Arena in Minneapolis, Minn. (AARON LAVINSKY – STAR TRIBUNE)



The reactions surrounding Thursday’s reports that Lindsay Whalen will be the new head  coach for our Gophers Women’s Basketball Team were overwhelmingly positive. For the man who made the official announcement, Mark Coyle, hiring Minnesota’s Queen of Basketball was far from a brain teaser. It’s like the U of M Athletic Director was in need of a lumberjack, and Paul Bunyan was on the market.

Basically, all Coyle (and our article) did was what was expected of him (us). While the role of not screwing this up was successfully completed, when it’s all said and done, it takes two to tango.

Thankfully, Whalen has been waiting for this proverbial dance:

Lindsay’s hiring comes in the aftermath of former coach Marlene Stollings’ departure for Texas Tech. Here are the financial details behind Lindsay Coach Whalen’s new gig:

  • $400,000 (2018-19 season)
  • $457,500 (2019-20 season)
  • $496,500 (2020-21 season)
  • $521,325 (2021-22 season)
  • $547,391 (2022-23 season)

The current Lynx star got a five-year deal that averages out to $484,543 (and twenty cents) annually. For comparison purposes, prior to leaving, Strollings had three years left on her $500,000 annual contract. As a result, the U of M is saving almost $15,500 a year with this move. That’s nice, right?

That’s right! That is nice. Although, when you peel back the curtain, the actual financial benefit of bringing in Whalen laughs at the idea of SAVING money on the switch.

via GIPHY

While her predecessor was under agreement until the 2020-21 season, the terms of Whalen’s deal go all the way through the 2022-23 campaign. As a result of those two additional years, annual comparison amounts are skewed.

To (properly) zero in on only the next three years, the Whalen deal totals almost $150,000 less than what Stollings’ now-voided contract would have come to. Speaking of what’s her face, check this out:

I understand everything is bigger in Texas, but damn. 

The way I see it, hiring Whalen while saving money, directly contradicts Business 101. The proverbial Paul Bunyan has agreed to come on board at a payroll reducing rate. Amazing. Fortunately for us, this contradiction is a blessing.

Oh, you need proof:

I can’t even begin to imagine that dollars and cents attached to that influx. And, it’s just the beginning

When it comes to the former Gopher player’s ability to recruit fans, those results speak for themselves. As for gathering top-tier recruits, you can expect similar results:

Johnny Minnesota (@TheJohnnyMN)
MinnesotaSportsFan.com