It was reported Friday that Jim Rome is ending an eight-year with his “Jim Rome is Burning” show on ESPN and moving it to the new CBS Sports Network.
But the TV show isn’t where Rome’s bread is buttered. The eye-opening tidbit in the report was a note that Rome makes $30 million a year from his syndicated radio show, according to James Andrews Miller, who co-authored a book about ESPN.
Keep that in mind the next time someone gets apoplectic about a star athlete gets a mega contract.
The deal Albert Pujols just signed with the Angels averages $24 million for 10 years. With incentives, it could pay him $268 million over 20 years, but that’s well short of what Rome makes to talk about sports on the radio, not counting whatever he makes for the TV show.
Rome, in fact, rakes in more from “The Jim Rome Show” than any American athlete earns in annual salary. More than LeBron James ($14.5 million) and Dwyane Wade ($14.2 million) combined received from the Heat last season.
James did make an additional $30 million in endorsements, and was third in total earnings among American athletes in 2011 behind Tiger Woods (62.3 million) and Phil Mickelson (61.2 million), according to the annual list compiled by SI.com. Wade ranked 11th on the Fortunate 50 at $28.2 million, including endorsements.
The 2011 list included 19 NBA players, 17 baseball players, eight NFL players, three NASCAR drivers and three golfers. Only the top nine made as much or more than Rome gets for lecturing his “Clones” in “The Jungle.” Tom Brady was ninth with just over $30 million in combined earnings.
Chris Bosh, the other member of the Heat’s Bit Three, just barely made the 2011 list at No. 50 with $14.5 million in salary and $1 million in endorsements.
Here is the complete 2011 Fortunate 50 from SI.com.
Bosh elevates role with Warren Henry
Bosh has had an endorsement deal with Warren Henry Auto Group for more than a year, and the South Florida dealer announced Friday that the Heat’s power forward will be the official celebrity spokesperson in 2012 promoting its Jaguar, Land Rover, Infiniti, Volvo, Lamborghini, Fisker and Subaru dealerships.
He will appear in television, radio and print advertisements and make special events appearances on behalf of the company. Bosh drives a black 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Sport HSE from Land Rover South Dade. Ah, the perks of stardom.