As expected, Alabama’s Board of Trustees Tuesday approved a new contract for Saban that includes both an extension and a significant raise. The head coach is now signed through the 2022 season; his old contract was set to run through the 2020 season.
If he fulfills all the years remaining on his contract, Saban would be 70 years old at the end of the deal.
Salary-wise, and while not the $7 million to $7.5 million average as previously reported, al.com reports that Saban will be paid an average of $6.5 million annually in base compensation. Additionally, the Associated Press reports, Saban will receive an additional $400,000 per year for what’s described as a “completion fee.”
Last season, Saban earned in the neighborhood of $5.6 million.
“We are pleased to announce that Coach Saban’s contract extension has been approved and that he’ll be our head football coach for many years to come,” said UA athletic director Bill Battle. “He is the best coach in the country and he’s brought Alabama back to the pinnacle of college football. His success on the field is obviously second to none, but Coach Saban’s influence on academics and all the other areas of our athletic programs are equally impressive to me.”
Not only is Saban easily the highest-paid coach in the game — Mack Brown made a little over $5.4 million at Texas before stepping down — but he’s one of the highest-paid of any coach in any sport in the United States.
Sean Peyton of the New Orleans Saints tops all coaches with his $8 million salary. Other NFL head coaches like Bill Belichick (New England Patriots, and Saban’s former boss) and Andy Reid (Kansas City Chiefs) earn roughly $7.5 million, while still other NFL coaches — Pete Carroll (Seattle Seahawks), Jeff Fisher (St. Louis Rams) — as well as an NBA coach – Doc Rivers (formerly of the Los Angeles Clippers) — pull in $7 million a year.
The only college coach who will make more than Saban moving forward? Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski.
The lofty compensation package, however, is most certainly worth it to the university in general and athletic department specifically.
In his seven years in Tuscaloosa, the Tide has gone 74-15, They’ve won at least 10 games six years, and of course have added three BCS titles to the trophy case. Add in the utter dominance on the recruiting trail, and UA has locked down the man who most feel is the best coach at the collegiate level.
“We are honored by the commitment the University of Alabama has made to us with this new contract.” said Saban. “It is certainly a mutual agreement in terms of our commitment to the University of Alabama. We will continue to work hard to keep our football program among the nation’s elite. My passion has always been to develop young men to their full potential as student-athletes. We’ve had great success in that area at Alabama and I’m appreciative of all the support and the resources we receive from the administration in order to make that happen. Our graduation rates are among the best in the country and that means as much or more than the victories on the field. We want our players to be more successful in life because they were involved with our program and I think we’ve been able do that.
“Terry and I are also proud to continue to contribute to the growth at the University of Alabama, this community, and the state of Alabama. We’ve been able to do some outstanding things through Nick’s Kids, the First Generation Scholarship Fund and we’re proud to help build the new St. Francis University Student Center. The past eight years have been productive in so many ways and we are grateful to call Alabama our home.”
In addition to Saban’s contract, new contracts for all of the coach’s assistants were announced as well. New offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin signed a three-year deal that will pay him $680,000 in 2014 and 2015, then jump to $714,000 in 2016. Based on the rapidly escalating coordinator salaries, the Tide got Kiffin for a relative pittance, although that arose from the coach receiving his buyout after being fired by USC.
All of the returning assistants on Saban’s coaching staff received raises ranging from $20,000 to $75,000, with the exception being Kirby Smart. The defensive coordinator will make the same $1.35 million the next two years as previously called for, although he did have a year tacked on to his contract.