In response to Steve Downes’ Aug. 31 comments on Coach Kyle Whittingham’s salary and family values:

Coach Whittingham’s salary is based on his job performance in the billion-dollar college football industry. Whittingham’s salary has nothing to do with various university department budgets or in-state tuition of students, nor should his salary be compared or weighed against them.

The University of Utah football and basketball programs generate roughly $80 million in revenue to support numerous other nonrevenue men’s and women’s sports and contribute $10.6 million to various student scholarships. Whittingham has more than earned his income over his tenure by industry standards and by teaching thousands of student-athletes the value of education, hard work, teamwork and sportsmanship. He also has given back to the community by supporting various charities throughout the year.

Many people in the state of Utah may believe that Gov. Gary Herbert is overpaid (being only paid 3 percent of Whittingham’s salary) based on Utah’s rank in education spending and health care support for Utah’s neediest residents.

I believe The Tribune article was meant to highlight that Whittingham has his priorities straight when it comes to his family.

Celebrity industries such as Hollywood, professional athletics and Fortune 500 CEOs don’t create this disparity with the average U.S. income. We the consumers do by attending movies and sporting events and using products and services. Whittingham should be applauded for what he brings to our communities and to the state of Utah.

Steve, if you want to help the University of Utah academic budget shortfalls, I suggest voting for politicians in the upcoming elections who support and value education in the state of Utah.

Franklin Marold, Millcreek