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This has been mentioned in the diaries, but it's front page news: Mack Brown got a big, big raise. UT Regents voted unanimously yesterday to give Mack Brown a $300,000 raise, lock in a $3 million "retention bonus" if he completes the 2009 season, an incentive package of $700,000 for a national championship, two turtle doves, and a pear tree.

I dare one of you students at the university to raise your hand in class and ask the professor what he or she thinks about it...

The numbers are gaudy, but it's fruitless to look at the numbers out of context. Football is a revenue sport. A big, big, big revenue sport. One that, along with private donations (made largely by huge football fans), funds the entire athletic department.

Since his arrival in Austin in December 1997, Mack Brown has returned Texas to the upper echelon of football relevance. Not just on the field, but in the coffers. Texas is making more money as a direct result of football than it ever has, and in matters of money, the CEOs who bring in big profits are rewarded with big salaries and incentives.

There's always room to criticize coaches for how they handle their business on the field, but in terms of Mack Brown's job as CEO of this program? Business has never been better.

I was surprised to learn that tickets remain both for the season opener against Arkansas State as well as Texas' September 22 tilt with Rice. Seats for the opener are available for $60; seats for the Rice game are selling at $65. Fans can purchase tickets at the Texas Box Office or by calling (512) 471-3333.

Briefly: Texas will honor the passing of Lady Bird Johnson with a wildflower sticker on their helmets... Barking Carnival highlights keys to the Arkansas State game... SMQ forsees a USC-Texas rematch, if only because Texas' schedule is easier than LSU's... Texas baseball picks up two transfer players... Women's hoops coach Gail Goestenkors led the annual "Gone  To Texas" kickoff event.

--PB--