For years as Washington State had some of the lowest-paid head coaches in the conference, the occasional rebuttal from Coug fans was the the cost of living is much lower in Pullman than many of the league's other coaching destinations. This is definitely a true statement. I remember a conversation with my UCLA-alum master teacher where he complained about how UCLA coaches had to go almost an hour away from campus to find affordable housing.
As a house is most likely the biggest purchase many people will make (for Leach it may be an old, old, wooden ship), that is an easy place to start when we look at the cost of living for a coach. The most expensive house that I could find in Pullman is listed at $639,000. While many people purchase houses that are many times than their actual yearly incomes, this house is merely one-quarter of the reported 2.25 million Leach will make per year. I like to picture Leach rolling up to the realty office, dropping a stack of $100 bills on the desk and saying "Give me the deed."
So after this purchase, that still leaves around $10.5 million for Leach to spend. Pullman doesn't have a whole lot of swanky restaurants or fancy car dealerships, so what could he get by frequenting some of the local favorites? After the jump, we have some suggestions.
No better form than bullet-point form:
- If he sticks with the special days of Wednesday and Thursday (even with all that cash, you still have to spend smart), Leach could get 1,838,879 Super Baskets from Cougar Country Drive-In. While this option seems very delicious, the amount of fat and salt may not be doctor recommended. It's possible that Leach may not want to do this.
- Maybe Leach is more into Italian, but not actual Italian. He could go to Sella's for a delicious three-topping calzone. Actually, he could go for 1,081,359 calzones.
- I could be under-estimating Leach's taste level. He could be spending a lot of time at one of the fancier restaurants in town, like Swilly's. There he can get Grilled Blue Mesa Organic Filet Mignon with Port Mushroom sauce and mixed vegetable saute with herbed new potatoes on the side. Suppose he really enjoys this meal. Well, he can make many trips back, because with his new contract he can purchase it 360,082 times. He could get that 197 times a day over the life of his contract. Now that is good eating.
- It's possible that Leach is not a big foodie. He has trimmed down considerably. He could want to work on his golf game. Assuming green fees aren't waived for him (although I would not be surprised if they are) he could spend the $49 a round to play at the beautiful Palouse Ridge Golf Course. He could play the course 214,285 times. Leach should be a fine golfer at that point and could potentially have a second career on the senior tour (he will need one after spending all his money on green fees).
- It's cold in Pullman, and Leach is coming from living in the Florida Keys. Bundling up will be important, and there is no better way to do that than in a WSU sweatshirt from the Bookie. Leach may want to go back to his roots at Texas Tech, and get one of those cool Under Armour hoodies. Of course, being the ever frugal Pirate Captain, he will buy them when the Bookie is having one of their occasional 25% off sales. He could procure 162,087 of those. That type of layering should provide ample protection from the harsh Palouse winter.
- Leach is an interesting guy, and he could have no interest in spending all that money on himself. Maybe he starts a Mike Leach Scholarship Fund To Further The Study Of Pirates At Washington State University. He could pay the four-year full-time tuition of 262 nautically-enthused Washington residents.
The options are endless (or maybe they aren't) and one thing is clear: While 11 million bucks is a lot of money everywhere, it is even more in Pullman, WA. Spend wisely, Coach Leach. Might I also suggest using the money to purchase treasure, then burying it somewhere and leaving clues all around for people to piece together? That sounds like fun.