At the time of publication, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) boasts over 600 lacrosse programs across three divisions, comprising 264 men's programs and 349 women's programs. According to the lacrosse rating outlet LaxPower, participation in collegiate-level lacrosse has nearly doubled since the mid 1990s, making it one of the fastest growing college sports in the nation.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) occupational employment and wages report of May 2010, the mean annual wage for coaches at colleges and universities was $49,140. This is significantly higher than the mean annual wage for all coaches nationwide, which the BLS reports as $35,950.
Factors Affecting Salary
Several factors affect the salary range of college lacrosse coaches, including the size of an institution, success of the program and division of competition. A lacrosse coach's salary is influenced by the many factors that affect collegiate coaching as a whole. NCAA Division 1 programs generate increased revenue and salaries due to media contracts, apparel contracts and higher ticket sales. Regular season record, conference tournament appearances and tournament trophies can also directly affect a coach's wages.
Salary By State
The annual mean wage for coaches in the District of Columbia tops that of any state. Coaches in the District earn a mean annual salary of $53,480, nearly 10 percent more than the national average. States with the lowest wages in this sector include Alabama, Maine, Montana and Idaho. With an average annual salary of $43,750, coaches in the Los Angeles, Cal. metro region averaged the highest pay rate among US metropolitan areas.
Relevant Background and Experience
Collegiate lacrosse coaches must posses either previous collegiate or professional experience as a player and/or coach. Proven enthusiasm for the game is necessary to foster player development, encourage team unity and attract players to a program. Coaching's inherent leadership requirements also necessitate that candidates be vocal leaders, master tacticians and savvy interpersonal communicators who posses an ability to unify a diverse scope of personalities and talents in order to foster teamwork and a winning culture on the field.