Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder paid Steve Spurrier $5 million a season to coach his team in 2002. Twenty years earlier, Spurrier was offered only $50,000 to coach the Tampa Bay Bandits of the USFL by owner John Bassett.
Bassett got a better bang-for-his-buck, as Spurrier won 35 games in three years as coach of the Bandits.
The old Ball Coach has come a long way since his first head coaching job as a “no name” with the Bandits.
Spurrier was the offensive coordinator for Duke, when the Bandits came calling. Bassett came down to North Carolina to talk to Spurrier about this new venture called the United States Football League.
Over a few martinis and a meaty T-bone steak, Bassett and the other minority owners agreed to offer Steve the job as the first head coach of the Tampa Bay Bandits.
Spurrier’s Bandit Ball was riding high, as football became fun again in the city of Tampa Bay. “We gave the fans a no-huddle offense, double reverses; we gave them something they hadn’t seen before,” says Spurrier from his University of South Carolina office in April of 2006.