Typically when a head coach has his contract extended after a few years, there’s plenty of fanfare. A news conference, some boosters shaking hands, a handful of exciting tweets on social media from various school accounts and, if we’re lucky, maybe even a term sheet or set of contract terms. After all, this is an example of a school keeping a head coach in town and hoping that the program is set on solid footing for years to come.
This is not, however, how things work at Northern Illinois apparently.
Per the Northern Star, athletic director Sean Frazier — for a second time — has quietly given a contract extension to head coach Rod Carey that will keep him leading the Huskies through June 30, 2022 (i.e. the 2021 season). Terms were obtained by the paper through a freedom of information request and will see Carey earn an estimated $2.4 million over the next four years in base salary and plenty more in incentives.
USA Today’s coaches salary database lists Carey as making $633,460 in total for 2018 with a buyout for the school of just over $1.8 million.
“There was no formal announcement of coach Carey’s contract extension,” NIU spokesperson Joe King told the Star. “Intercollegiate sports does not routinely put out news releases on contract extensions and did not do so in this case.”
Carey is 50–27 overall in DeKalb after five and a half seasons leading the team. The coach, a former offensive lineman at Indiana, won the MAC championship in 2014 and has three division titles to his name.
While it’s not all that surprising to see Carey get a new deal, especially with the team trending upward recently, it still is a bit curious to see why Frazier and NIU would opt to keep news of the extension quiet yet again. Generally keeping a coach around in the MAC is news for celebrating but things appear to be operating a little differently when it comes to the Huskies.