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Saturday, May 18, 2024

Head Coaches’ New Jobs

  • In the past few days, two of the Power 5’s most successful programs have lost their head coaches to ailing, though rich, teams.  
  • Schools that signed them are throwing around more money than ever before.
Photo: LSU Athletics/Design: Alex Brooks

The conference realignment dominos have been falling since August. Now, another part of the industry is following the same pattern: the football coaching carousel.

In the past few days, two of the Power 5’s most successful programs have lost their head coaches to ailing — though rich — teams. And schools that took them are throwing around more money than ever before

Neither Brian Kelly nor Lincoln Riley has won a national championship as a head coach. But they’ll take home some of the biggest paychecks in the country.

  • Brian Kelly landed in Baton Rouge yesterday to take the coaching job at LSU — and will make $95 million over 10 years, not including incentives.
  • Lincoln Riley is headed to USC. The school hasn’t disclosed terms of the deal — though one rumor pegged it at $110 million.
  • Both schools are paying buyouts to departing coaches — LSU is paying Ed Orgeron $16.9 million. USC is paying Clay Helton more than $10 million, according to Yahoo.

Alabama coach Nick Saban, who has won seven national titles, was the highest-paid coach this year ($9.75M not including incentives, via USA Today).

Salaries for Michigan State coach Mel Tucker and now Kelly don’t trail by much. It’s unclear where Riley will rank — though he’ll surely be somewhere in the top five.

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