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Ex-Penn State President Spanier was highest paid public college president when forced out

The Chronicle of Higher Education has released its annual ranking of what public college presidents make.

Survey results released Sunday show four chief executives earned more than $1 million last year.

Topping the list was ex-Penn State President Graham Spanier (SPAN'-yer). He shot to the No. 1 spot when he was forced out in November 2011 over his handling of the sex abuse scandal involving former defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky. Spanier received $2.9 million in 2011-12, including $1.2 million in severance pay and $1.2 million in deferred compensation.

The median compensation for public college presidents including pay, benefits and bonuses was $441,000.

Ohio State University President E. Gordon Gee (gee) had the highest base salary: $830,000. That's more than double the median base salary of $374,000.

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