Cael Sanderson has the Penn State wrestling program right where he wants it — and right at contract time

Cael Sanderson doesn’t hesitate to talk about the future of the wrestling program at Penn State, and the coach in his eighth year in charge has proven that as long as he’s a part of it, that its future transcends the word bright.

He’ll turn 38 in June, the same month his Penn State contract expires after a five-year extension in June 2012 under then-athletic director Dave Joyner.

Sanderson didn’t offer great detail, nor was he asked for line-by-line specifics, but he intimated this week that re-upping is merely a formality.

“I think my contract is up this year,” he said Tuesday. “I’ve been talking with them for over a year. There’s just a couple of things I was hoping to get done for our program that when they’re done, I’m in.”

He said a new contract isn’t something he thinks much about. “I’m kind of just dragging my feet a little bit,” he said. “It’s not necessarily anything about me; I mean, I’m happy with what I have. There are a couple of things I’m trying to get done to move the program along and so that’s kind of what I’ve been waiting on.”

He was quick to point out that he and his staff of his brother, Cody Sanderson, and close friends Casey Cunningham and Jake Varner are not “entitlement” guys.

“I think that’s one of the biggest problems in college athletics generally speaking, just the entitlement factor,” Sanderson said. “We don’t think we deserve something just because somebody else has it.”

Former Virginia Tech coach Kevin Dresser was recently hired at Iowa State, Sanderson’s alma mater, for a salary of $300,000. Sanderson five years ago was bumped up to $175,000, not including performance bonuses which aren’t made public.

Penn State has won five Big Ten titles and six NCAA championships under the Sanderson regime, including this season’s tournament at which Penn State won five individual titles in St. Louis.

The program in 2015-16 brought in $636,917 in ticket revenue. Total operating expenses were listed at just over $2.4 million…

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