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Kevin Schnepf, Published April 02 2012

Schnepf: Some suggestions on how to spend newly acquired riches

Fargo

The three winners of the Mega Millions jackpot will each make a $213 million haul. If they don’t want to spend it on a trip around the world, a new Mercedes, a new mansion or early retirement, here are a few suggestions – assuming one of the winners is a sports fanatic:

E That money could pay for the top 10 salaries in Major League Baseball. The Yankees would be grateful considering Alex Rodriguez, CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira rank 1, 3 and 7, costing a total of $74.5 million per season.

Heck, the Minnesota Twins would probably give you a season voucher for Kramarczuk’s bratwurst and Summit brew considering they have the fourth-highest paid player in Joe Mauer ($23 million).

E If you’re an NBA fan, you could cover for the top 11 salaries with a little left over to pay for all those tattoos. The Lakers would probably give you a courtside seat next to Jack Nicholson since they have the highest paid player in Kobe Bryant ($25 million) and the sixth-highest in Pau Gasol ($18 million).

Or maybe the Knicks would let you become a roommate with Jeremy Lin, considering they have to pay more than $36 million to Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire.

E Having a hard time deciding between baseball and basketball? Then do both by calling up NBA legend Magic Johnson and help pay for his portion of the $2 billion spent to purchase the Los Angeles Dodgers. There might be a lasagna dinner with Tommy Lasorda in it for you.

E If you love reality TV like “Sunday Night Football” and “Dog the Bounty Hunter,” you could pay for the $5.8 million salary that New Orleans head coach Sean Payton will lose this season.

That would leave you enough money left over to pay for the top 18 salaries in the NFL. Denver’s John Elway might invite you to his stadium suite since he just committed $18 million to Peyton Manning. He might even throw in an autographed picture of Tim Tebow praying.

Vikings’ owner Zygi Wilf might let you sit in a Metrodome suite (a bathroom stall in Cowboy Stadium might be bigger) considering he has to pay Jared Allen $11.6 million, the seventh-highest salary in the NFL. Be careful, Zygi might ask you to donate your money toward the new $975 million stadium.

E You could pay for the salaries of all 68 coaches who stalked the sidelines in this year’s NCAA tournament – and still have $133 million left over to pay for Bud Grant’s suite in the Vikings’ new stadium.

Kentucky’s $4.5 million man John Calipari would be grateful – especially since he will lose three underclassmen who will each equal or surpass what he makes by going to the NBA next year.

Kansas’ $3 million man Bill Self would be grateful. Then again, maybe Self is the winner who bought a Mega Millions ticket in northeastern Kansas.

E If you want to make sure you can still watch all those NCAA tournament games on free TV, maybe you could help pay for that $10.8 billion contract CBS has with the NCAA. (No wonder the NCAA doesn’t flinch over issues like an Indian nickname).

E If your money could help North Dakota, maybe you would want to channel it to a small-time operation like North Dakota State athletics. You could build not one – but six – renovated Bison Sports Arenas.

E By now you’ve probably come to the conclusion that the sports world – big or small – really doesn’t need your $213 million. You’re better off spending it on something less expensive like a trip around the world, a new Mercedes, a new mansion or early retirement.

Readers can reach Forum Sports Editor

Kevin Schnepf at (701) 241-5549

or at kschnepf@forumcomm.com