While his Gophers are getting ready to make their second appearance in the Big Dance, Richard Pitino is cashing some pretty decent paychecks!

Richard Pitino has been heading the University of Minnesota men's basketball program for the last six years. And this year, the Gophers are getting set to take on Louisville in the first round of this year's NCAA men's basketball championship-- their second trip to the Big Dance since he's been the head coach.

But do you remember just how much money you and I (and all Minnesotans, whose taxes help fund the U of M) are paying him to coach the team? Suffice it to say, he's doing alright.

In fact, 'alright' might be understating things a little bit. Because according to this Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal story, Coach Pitino is making a whopping $638,140 in salary. Yeah, that's 'alright' if you ask me!

But wait-- there's more. That's just Pitino's base salary. This Star-Tribune story notes that Pitino was given a $1.7 million bonus when his contract was extended two years ago. And this USA Today story says he total compensation from the U is closer to $2,188,141-- which puts him 51st on the list of highest-paid college basketball coaches in the country.

Yeah, that's 'alright,' isn't it?!? Let's hope all those big bucks can help the Gophers beat Louisville and make an appearance in the Final Four, which is being played right here in Minnesota, at U.S. Bank Stadium in April.

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