As expected, rumors connecting Charlie Strong to various vacancies during the latest spinning of the coaching carousel have paid off in a big way for the Louisville coach.
According to ESPN.com‘s Brett McMurphy, the UofL and Strong have reached an agreement on a new eight-year contract that will pay the third-year coach an average of $3.7 million a season. That number marks a nearly 70-percent increase in pay for Strong; according to the USA Today salaries database, Strong earned $2.305 million in 2012.
If those numbers are accurate, Strong would become the seventh-highest paid head coach in college football, behind only Alabama’s Nick Saban ($5.5 million), Texas’ Mack Brown ($5.4 million), Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops ($4.5 million), Ohio State’s Urban Meyer ($4.3 million), LSU’s Les Miles ($3.9 million) and Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz ($3.8 million) (LOL).
The financial heights the new deal reached should come as no surprise as, during the 2012 season, athletic director Tom Jurich stated he was willing to make Strong the highest-paid coach at the FBS level if that’s what it took to retain him.
In early December, Strong turned down an offer to become the head coach at Tennessee. At the time, it was reported that Louisville was in the process of working up a revamped contract for the coach.
Strong had also been connected to the Auburn opening, speculation which the coach vehemently denied.