Matt Barkley is an Idiot

So USC star QB Matt Barkley has decided to return to college at USC rather than declare for the NFL draft. I get the desire for a guy to stay in school and be BMOC but this decision is one of the largest financial mistakes I have seen. The new NFL contract drastically changed the dynamics of being THE #1 pick overall. This year’s #1 pick Cam Newton signed a 4 year, $22 Million contract all guaranteed. Barkley was projected to be the #5 pick in the next draft. This year that paid $19.5 Million for 4 years all guaranteed. So if Barkley improves his status to #1 by playing another year it looks like he will gain $3 Million on average.

But look at what happens if he drops to say the #15 pick (sort of like Matt Leinart did a few years back). This year’s #15 pick received a contract worth $9.3 Million all guaranteed for 4 years. That’s a $10 million potential loss!

There are 4 possible outcomes from Barkley staying in school:

  1. He gets better and moves up to #1
  2. He gets worse and drops in the draft
  3. He stays the same which likely also drops him in the draft as NFL teams expect improvement
  4. He gets hurt

So he has a 75% chance to lose $10 million and a 25% chance to make $3 million. You can do the math but this looks like a hugely -EV decision. Is staying in college worth $6.75 Million for 4 years? Imagine how bad a decision this is if Barkley pulls the full Aaron Rodgers and drops to #25 in the draft (another $2 million loss) or even drops out of the first round.

What are they teaching in college?

– Randy Collack, Chief Operating Officer
Twitter: @schmengieBG

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