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Lavin ranks fourth among Big East coaches in total compensation

Men's basketball head coach took in $2,027,307 while revenue grew to $7,390,398 in 2012

Lavin ranks fourth among Big East coaches in total compensation

Diana Colapietro

St. John's head coach Steve Lavin made $2,027,307 in total compensation from mid 2011-12, according to the University's most recent 990 tax form

St. John’s men’s basketball coach Steve Lavin, who has been involved in contract-extension talks with the University this season, ranks fourth in total compensation among the 10 Big East head coaches at $2,027,307, according to the most recent tax records available to the public.

The fourth-year head coach in the midst of a six-year contract falls in behind Georgetown’s John Thompson III at $2,676,836, Villanova’s Jay Wright at $2,489,332 and DePaul’s Oliver Purnell at $2,274,592.

The figures are found in each school’s most recent 990 tax form, where it details the highest-paid employees of the institution. Total compensation includes base, bonus, incentive, retirement, deferred and nontaxable compensation. The most recent records come from 2011-12 filings.

“Steve is coming to the end of the fourth year in his initial six-year contract and it is an appropriate time to discuss an extension,” Director of Athletics Chris Monasch said in a statement addressing the initial report of contract talks. “We have certainly had preliminary talks and look forward to revisiting the matter at the conclusion of the season.”

Following Lavin, Buzz Williams of Marquette made $1,888,881, former Butler coach Brad Stevens (since replaced by Brandon Miller) received $1,165,940 and Seton Hall’s Kevin Willard took in $1,059,639 to round out those making over $1 million.

Creighton’s Gregory McDermott made $945,725, Xavier’s Christopher Mack made $860,807 and Providence’s Ed Cooley took home the least at $783,518. Two of the three new members of the Big East were under the $1 million line, though those salaries reflect years when the teams were in mid-major conferences.

Under Lavin, St. John’s has seen a marked improvement on and off the court. In the coach’s first year, the program returned to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2002. That also led to increased financial gain for the University.

St. John’s program revenue reached a 10-year peak of $7,390,398 in 2012 according to numbers the University filed in accordance with the Department of Education’s Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act. That is also the most recent year on record.

Before Lavin’s arrival, the highest amount brought in by the team was $6,435,345 in 2003 when the team won a later-vacated NIT title under Mike Jarvis. In between, the lowest point was hit in $4,041,042 in 2005, in the wake of the various scandals that clouded the end of Jarvis’ era.

Lavin and the other head coaches are all the highest-paid employees of their institutions on record.

“We are pleased with the progress our basketball program has made,” Lavin said in last week’s statement about contract discussions. “I look forward to being the coach at St. John’s for the long-term. At this point our full attention is on having a strong finish to this season, which in turn will help our recruiting efforts as we move forward.”

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