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College Football Coaching Salaries: Pac-12

college football coaching salaries

The Pac-12 was the last of the Power five conferences to announce they would be having a season this year. After initially stating their season would be cancelled due to Covid-19, they changed their mind and decided to play. Now that we know there will be a season, it is time to take a look at the college football coaching salaries for the Pac-12.

Pac-12 College Football Coaching Salaries

Jimmy Lake, University of Washington

Jimmy Lake took over after the 2019 season after Chris Peterson stepped down. Lake has been with the Huskies program since the 2014 season in a variety of roles, all on the defensive side of the ball. Lake will look to bring the team back to double digit wins after a disappointing 2019 season.

The contract is for five years and will pay him a total of $16,000,000 with an average salary of $3,200,000. He can earn bonuses up to $1,275,000 per season based off team success and program APR.

Chip Kelly, University of California Los Angeles

Chip Kelly has had a very up and down coaching career both in college and the NFL. After bursting onto the scene with the University of Oregon, Kelly quickly became one of the hottest coaching names in all of football. After a very disappointing coaching tenure for the Philadelphia Eagles, he returned to college football.

Although Kelly’s contract is valued at $23,300,000 over five years, his base salary is only $300,000 per season. Where he brings in the most money is his annual ‘talent fee,” which is appearances for boosters and other university functions. That fee starts at $3,000,000 for the first season, and increases every year to the point where it is $4,300,000 in the final two seasons.

Kyle Wittingham, Utah University

Wittingham has been with the Utes program since the 1994 season, and after years sa an assistant took over the head coaching job after the 2004 season. The program has seen great success since he took over the role, as they support a 131-63 overall record and 11-3 bowl record.

Wittingham has a unique contract, as he will only earn on average $1,300,000 per season in base salary. However, he will earn a little over $6,000,000 over the five years for television and radio revenue. The new deal also states he can earn up to $1,080,000 per season in bonuses that includes a variety of things such as team performance, personal performance, program APR and graduation rate.

Justin Wilcox, California University

Justin Wilcox recently signed a new extension after the 2018 season. After bouncing around multiple schools as a defensive coordinator, Wilcox agreed to become the head coach of Cal before the 2017 season. The program has performed just about average since he took over with a 20-18 overall record.

Much like Chip Kelly’s contract, Wilcox’s new contract will mainly be based off a talent fee. His base salary will pay him $275,000 per year beginning in 2019, with a talent fee starting at $2,250,000 that increases by $150,000 each year until his contract ends in 2023. He can also earn bonuses up to $900,000 per season based off team performance and academic records.

Nick Rolovich, Washington State University

Nick Rolovich took over as the head coach after this past season after Mike Leach took a job a job at Mississippi State University. Rolovich is coming over after spending four seasons as the head coach at Hawaii, and is recently coming off his best season which included 10 wins and a bowl win.

Rolovich signed a five-year deal which will pay him $3,000,000 per season. The interesting part for his contract is the buyout terms. If the coach were to leave after the 2020 season he would owe the school $8,000,000. That number drops down to $6,000,000, $5,000,000, $2,000,000, and $1,000,000 every year after.

Mario Cristobal, University of Oregon

Cristobal recently signed an extension that will keep him in Eugene until after the 2023 seasons. The contract pays him an annual salary of $2,600,000 that increases by $100,000 each of the four seasons.

Where Cristobal can really cash in on his new deal is all incentive based, where based off multiple factors he can earn up to $2,175,000 per season.

Herm Edwards, Arizona State University

Herm Edwards was hired after the 2017 season after he decided to make a return to coaching. Edwards spent years coaching in the NFL before he moved to broadcasting with ESPN. He originally signed a five-year deal but was recently extended for two more.

Edwards received a pay raise which will now pay him $3,500,000 per season, with a pay raise of $200,000 each season after. The bonuses of the extension were unclear; however he was set to make up to $3,700,000 per season in incentives based off classroom performance and team success before the extension.

Kevin Sumlin, Arizona University

Sumlin was hired as the head coach for the Wildcats before the 2018 season after being fired by Texas A&M for not reaching expectations. His contract is set for five years with an average pay of $2,900,000.

The deal also allows for him to make up to $1,770,000 in bonuses, along with a $10,000,000 mutual buyout clause in the first two seasons should the school decide to fire him, or if Sumlin were to leave and take another job.

Karl Dorrell, Colorado University

Dorrell will be another first-year head coach in 2020 after spending years in the NFL as a position coach for multiple different teams. He takes over for Mel Tucker, who recently left the program for Michigan State University

Dorrell’s contract is for five years with an average base salary of $3,600,000. His deal also includes multiple incentives that could pay him up to roughly $2,000,000 based on performance and season accolades. He also has a buyout clause similar to Nick Rolovich’s deal if he were to leave early that starts at $10,000,000 and decreases each year after.

Jonathan Smith, Oregon State University

Smith was hired by the Beavers after the 2017 season, and the program has seen rapid improvement after just two seasons, which led the university to give him an extension this past off season. The new deal will keep him with the team through 2025.

Smith received a hefty pay raise which will now pay him $2,400,000 in 2020, and a $100,000 increase each season after. All of Smith’s bonuses from his last deal stay the same except for the incentive that would pay him up to $100,000 per season based off total wins per season. It also included a buyout clause of $3,000,000 which decreases each season.

Clay Helton of the University of South California and David Shaw of Stanford University both do not have enough public information regarding their contracts since both schools are private universities and are not required to release contracts to the public.

We’re adding more college football coaching salaries from other conferences here.

About Sam Lowrey

Senior at the University of Kansas studying Sports Management and Business Administration.
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