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Monday, October 8, 2012

Vince Young: Broke Ex-NFL QB

Professional athletes make lots of money..  globs upon globs of it.

For example, if an everyday person had a job which payed them $100k a year, and pre-taxes, that person earned that amount every year of working from 18 until 65 (47years), he/she would have brought in $4.7 million in revenue.

Alex Rodriguez of the NY Yankees earns $25mil to play baseball for 1 season..  So if a regular season is 162 games, A-Rod would need to play in 32 baseball games (1 month of baseball approximately) to earn $4.6mil.

And yet Americans are conditioned not to be resentful of the wealth disparity; certainly not resentful enough to simply choose to stop attending games live and buying the merchandise.

The funny thing about professional athletes though is that while many make exorbitant and obscene amounts of money, they also attend to end up in the poorhouse at a much faster rate than everyday folk.
For today's example, we look at former Heisman Trophy winner (from Texas) and former NFL QB Vince Young, who only 5 years ago was the star quarterback of the Tennessee Titans and the future looked as bright as the cheeriest of blue skies.   The fans there loved him and he was paid an obscene amount of money (about $40m earned while a Titan + another $10mil in endorsements) to throw TDs..

And today..

After a 1 year backup QB stint with the Philadelphia Eagles which ended with his release, Young is currently out of work after being released as a backup QB in Buffalo and pretty much broke.

So how did Young blow over $30m in three years?

Of course 50% of earnings go back to Uncle Sam and another 5% to the agent who negotiated the NFL contracts... But still, shouldn't there be something left?    

According to the website Bossip, here's just some of the crazy-stupid purchases Young made as he quickly blew through his cash:
1)  $600 shots of Louis XIII (its an expensive cognac) from Morton’s restaurants for his buddies.  A 750ml bottle runs $2,200

2)  He once spent $6,000 at TGI Fridays -- think about that

3)  He wanted to be alone one day (don't we all) so he bought every ticket on a Southwest Airline flight to be by himself.   If each ticket on average is $300 and there's 180 seats (guesstimating) that would have cost Vince $54,000

4)  He had a Cheesecake Factory addiction that caused him to spend $5,000 a WEEK on food there. Yes... A week!  (52wks x $5,000 = $260,000)

5)  Him and a teammate once bought 75 shots of Patron in 30 minutes. We hope they didn’t drink it all themselves.   Hmm.. we're sensing a pattern--  drinking problem perhaps??  Patron is a premium tequila.  A 750ml bottle can run as high as $500 depending on the specific type.
6)  He invested in a steakhouse called the Vince Young Steakhouse.   The guy loves food...

Of course like many pro athletes, Young also pissed away a lot of his money on retaining/maintaining big posses, bad investments and acquiring real estate.  

Now the remaining money Young has is being spent not on parties and slutty women, but lawyers as he's in the process of suing his uncle for bad investment advice and trying to hold off debt collectors.

We've nothing against Vince Young; this wasn't a 'hit' piece..  Just a means of showing that economic pain can happen to anyone...

The big difference between Young and most others who financial struggle is Young's wounds were self-inflicted.  They were based on ignorance about the value of money (and how to use it responsibly) and the naive assumption that future multi-million dollar paychecks were guaranteed to be in his future.

As for the poor and struggling, they don't have the luxury of messing up their financial lives intentionally like the well-to-do can.  The system itself takes care of that for them.