Sweaty Men Endeavors

The sports blog with the slightly gay name

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Welcome to Detroit - but we must tax you

So who made up that big mass of people inside Ford Field yesterday? Was that crowd made up of print, radio, and TV reporters? Or were there a bunch of accountants and taxmen waiting to talk to the Seahawks and Steelers?

See, Michigan has a "jock tax" which takes 3.4% of the money professional athletes earn while working here. The Seahawks, for example, will contribute approximately $300,000 to the economy. Even worse, Detroit throws in an additional city tax (1.275%), which shakes around $200,000 from the pockets of the two football teams.

(Maybe it sort of evens out. When the Lions played Pittsburgh at the end of the NFL season, Pennsylvania taxed three percent of their earnings. California, by the way, is the most expensive place to play, tacking on a nine percent surcharge.)

This could be why pro athletes need entourages. They're probably full of accountants. According to an AP article (via the Washington Post), Matt Hasselbeck will have to file taxes in eight states where he played this season. (Insert Hasselbeck lost hair joke here.) Then the accountants do their thing, taking into account the number of "active duty days" in each of those states, sliding tax scales, along with daily salaries. I don't think TurboTax covers that stuff.

So accountants need to get a head start. It's almost tax time. Are you sure at least a few of them weren't asking their clients for a minute of their time yesterday? That wasn't someone from H&R Block next to ESPN's Andrea Kramer?

But hey, thanks for playing here, guys. Don't forget to pay your taxes on the way out.

(Thanks to Sweaty Men Endeavors' southwest correspondent, DiscoPete, for the heads-up.)


  • At February 01, 2006 11:26 AM, Blogger the sports dude said…

    Man, I thought my taxes were complicated, I never knew pro athletes had to do this! At least I know the local governments and Uncle Sam are screwing the pro athletes as well, it just isn't the little people like you and me! Sorry, no offense, I can call you a "little people" right?

  • At February 01, 2006 11:41 AM, Blogger Ian C. said…

    Sports Dude, from a financial standpoint, I'm very much "little people." From other points of view, however, I think I have some work to do before I can be called "little."

  • At February 01, 2006 1:39 PM, Anonymous josh b. said…

    Yeah, but they're still playing ball on national tv and win or lose get a nice chunk of change to take home.

    I wonder how much I'll get on my refund this year.

  • At February 01, 2006 4:21 PM, Anonymous josh b. said…

    Trying to be a little more focused over here. Stop by for a visit.


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