Texas defensive coordinator Todd Orlando was already one of the highest-paid and most-secure assistant coaches in the country. Upon joining Tom Herman in making the trek from Houston to Austin, Orlando netted a 3-year contract that paid him $1.09 million annually, good for 14th most in the country according to USA Today.
A year later, that’s not enough.
After Texas A&M’s pursuit of LSU defensive coordinator Dave Aranda led the Tigers to pony up to the tune of a fully guaranteed $10 million contract and then pull Mike Elko away from Notre Dame with a deal worth well north of $1.5 million annually, Texas saw fit to reward Orlando’s loyalty.
Anwar Richardson of Orangebloods reported that Orlando drew interest from Texas A&M and Florida State, and Yahoo‘s Pete Thamel reported that Orlando would be among the top five highest-paid coordinators, which in 2017 would mean he’d have to make at least $1.3 million.
However, Brian Davis of the Austin American-Statesman followed up by saying the final number would be well north of that.
After allowing 51 points in a horrific loss to Maryland to open the season, Texas limited opponents to 18.8 points per game over its final 12 contests, a figure that would have ranked in the top 13 nationally if spread over the entire season — and did so whilst playing a schedule that saw seven of the top 40 scoring offenses. And that was with largely the same players that finished 46th nationally at 31.9 points per game in 2016. Texas also finished third in FBS in third down defense (27.1 percent) and sixth in yards per carry allowed (3.01).
Orlando will have to earn his money in 2018, as stalwarts Poona Ford, Malik Jefferson, DeShon Elliott (an All-American in 2017) and Holton Hill have all best lost to graduation or early entries, with defensive end Charles Omenihu possibly joining them.