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Top 50 Highest Paid College HC’s!

I am now fully entrenched writing my 18th edition of my college preview magazine and awhile back finished writing all the coaches sections for each of the 124 schools.

One thing that has clearly changed in the past decade plus has been the proliferation of the coaches’ salaries and in 2011 a record 32 college coaches made $2,000,000 or more for the year.

I find it fascinating to see what each of the coaches make per year and believe me much of it is well deserved when you consider the hours they put in and the constant demands by alums all over the country.

Below is a chart of the top 50 highest paid college coaches and the salary information was provided by the USA Today football coaches salary database which combine both guaranteed and non-guaranteed incomes. (Private universities such as USC and Notre Dame did not reveal what they specifically paid their coaches.)

Top 50 Highest Paid College Coaches

Rk
School Conf Head Coach Univ Non-Univ Total Pay Max Bonus
1
Texas Big 12 Mack Brown $5,192,500 $1,000 $5,193,500 $850,000
2
Alabama SEC Nick Saban $4,683,333 $150,000 $4,833,333 $700,000
3
Oklahoma Big 12 Bob Stoops $4,075,000 $0 $4,075,000 $819,500
4
LSU SEC Les Miles $3,751,000 $105,417 $3,856,417 $700,000
5
Iowa Big Ten Kirk Ferentz $3,785,000 $0 $3,785,000 $1,750,000
6
Arkansas SEC Bobby Petrino $3,635,000 $3,000 $3,638,000 $650,000
7
Auburn SEC Gene Chizik $3,500,000 $0 $3,500,000 $1,200,000
8
Michigan Big Ten Brady Hoke $3,254,000 $0 $3,254,000 $500,000
9
Florida SEC Will Muschamp $3,221,000 $0 $3,221,000 $450,000
10
Georgia SEC Mark Richt $2,811,400 $128,400 $2,939,800 $525,000
11
South Carolina SEC Steve Spurrier $2,800,000 $28,000 $2,828,000 $1,000,000
12
Oregon PAC-12 Chip Kelly $2,800,000 N/A $2,800,000 $1,035,000
13
Nebraska Big Ten Bo Pelini $2,775,000 N/A $2,775,000 $1,000,000
14
Mississippi SEC Houston Nutt $2,756,250 $15,500 $2,771,750 $715,000
15
Florida St ACC Jimbo Fisher $2,750,000 $0 $2,750,000 $725,000
16
Missouri Big 12 Gary Pinkel $2,700,000 $0 $2,700,000 $850,000
17
Wisconsin Big Ten Bret Bielema $2,500,000 $98,186 $2,598,186 $400,000
18
Mississippi St SEC Dan Mullen $2,500,000 $0 $2,500,000 $650,000
19
Georgia Tech ACC Paul Johnson $2,369,000 $0 $2,369,000 $1,125,000
20
Tennessee SEC Derek Dooley $2,293,391 $37,200 $2,330,591 $475,000
21
Virginia Tech ACC Frank Beamer $2,243,000 $85,000 $2,328,000 $407,500
22
Louisville Big East Charlie Strong $2,300,000 $5,000 $2,305,000 $500,000
23
California PAC-12 Jeff Tedford $2,300,000 $0 $2,300,000 $255,000
24
Rutgers Big East Greg Schiano $2,195,000 $101,969 $2,296,969 $530,000
25
Wake Forest ACC Jim Grobe $2,275,545 N/A $2,275,545 N/A
26
Washington PAC-12 Steve Sarkisian $2,250,000 $0 $2,250,000 $1,075,000
27
Texas A&M Big 12 Mike Sherman $2,200,000 $1,000 $2,201,000 $350,000
28
Kansas Big 12 Turner Gill $2,100,000 $1,200 $2,101,200 $419,158
29
Oklahoma St Big 12 Mike Gundy $2,100,000 N/A $2,100,000 $500,000
30
Texas Tech Big 12 Tommy Tuberville $2,050,000 $9,000 $2,059,000 $1,025,000
31
TCU Mt. West Gary Patterson $2,018,362 N/A $2,018,362 N/A
32
Maryland ACC Randy Edsall $2,013,440 $0 $2,013,440 $875,000
33
Kansas St Big 12 Bill Snyder $1,925,000 $0 $1,925,000 $455,000
34
Michigan St Big Ten Mark Dantonio $1,918,000 $0 $1,918,000 $650,000
35
NC State ACC Tom O’Brien $932,950 $945,000 $1,877,950 $750,000
36
Clemson ACC Dabo Swinney $1,833,333 $13,000 $1,846,333 $775,000
37
Virginia ACC Mike London $1,780,000 $14,679 $1,794,679 $715,000
38
Duke ACC David Cutcliffe $1,762,895 N/A $1,762,895 N/A
39
Illinois Big Ten Ron Zook $1,750,000 $3,500 $1,753,500 $65,650
40
SMU CUSA June Jones $1,727,082 N/A $1,727,082 N/A
41
Kentucky SEC Joker Phillips $1,701,339 $1,150 $1,702,489 $1,105,000
42
Minnesota Big Ten Jerry Kill $1,700,000 N/A $1,700,000 $875,000
42
USF Big East Skip Holtz $1,700,000 $0 $1,700,000 $350,000
42
Utah PAC-12 Kyle Whittingham $1,700,000 N/A $1,700,000 $740,000
45
Baylor Big 12 Art Briles $1,549,396 N/A $1,549,396 N/A
46
Navy Ind. Ken Niumatalolo $1,538,190 N/A $1,538,190 N/A
47
Boise St Mt. West Chris Petersen $1,525,000 $0 $1,525,000 $170,000
48
Arizona St PAC-12 Dennis Erickson $1,500,000 $3,000 $1,503,000 $1,800,000
49
Connecticut Big East Paul Pasqualoni $1,500,000 N/A $1,500,000 $114,583
50
West Virginia Big East Dana Holgorsen $1,490,000 $0 $1,490,000 $600,000

1. Mack Brown, Texas
Mack Brown took over a 4-7 team in ’98 but then proceeded to take them to bowls in 13 of 14 seasons. He has led Texas to at least a share of six Big 12 South Titles, a national title in ‘05 and in ’08 won the Bobby Dodd National COY.

2. Nick Saban, Alabama
Alabama had just one winning season in the previous four years before Nick Saban took over. Saban took LSU to a National Title in ’03 and spent ’05 & ’06 as HC of the Miami Dolphins. In his 16 seasons as a college HC he’s never had a losing season and of course he’s now guided the Tide to their 13th & 14th National Titles.

3. Bob Stoops, Oklahoma
Prior to Bob Stoops’ arrival, Oklahoma had five consecutive non-winning seasons. Stoops’ arrived in 1999 won a National Title in his 2nd season then played in the Title game in ’03, ’04 and ’08. OU’s 132 wins the last 12 years are more than any other BCS team.

4. Les Miles, LSU
When Les Miles took over at Oklahoma St the Cowboys had been to one bowl in 12Y. He left taking them to three straight. Miles led the Tigers to a National Title in his third season and after a 3Y drought without an SEC Title, guided them to a perfect 13-0 regular season LY before losing the National Title game while earning AP COY.

5. Kirk Ferentz, Iowa
Kirk Ferentz took over for a legend Hayden Fry in 1999. In ’02 he led Iowa to its first Big Ten Title since ’90 and also the most wins in school history (11) which he tied in 2009. Ferentz was named the Big Ten COY in ’02, ’04 and ’09.

6. Bobby Petrino, Arkansas
HC Bobby Petrino had a great run at Louisville, guiding the team to 4 bowls and a pair of #6 AP finishes. He left for the Atlanta Falcons in ’07 and was blasted by the media after quitting with three games to go. Arkansas struggled in the changeover in ’08 going 5-7 but Petrino turned it around going 8-5 in ’09 and In his 3rd year here he led the Hogs to their first ever BCS bowl and LY led them to a school tying 11 wins.

7. Gene Chizik, Auburn
Auburn fans were not thrilled when former DC (’02-’04) Gene Chizik was hired to replace Tommy Tuberville as he was 5-19 as Iowa St’s HC (’07-’08). However, Chizik delivered Auburn’s 2nd National Title (1957) in 2010 and Chizik is now 9-0 in bowls as a grad asst thru HC.

8. Brady Hoke, Michigan
While not an alum Brady Hoke was an assistant at Michigan for eight years (’95-’02) before taking the job as Ball St HC job (34-39). After getting the Cardinals to their highest ever rank (#12) Hoke took over San Diego St which had not had a winning season S/’98. In his 2nd year he left after earning MWC COY leading the Aztecs to their best record S/’77 and last year guided the Wolverines to 11 wins and their first BCS Bowl Win since the 2000 season.

9. Will Muschamp, Florida
Will Muschamp who was the NCAA’s highest paid assistant in 2010 beat Meyer’s future team Ohio St to finish 7-6 in his inaugural season as HC. Muschamp was the DC and HC-in-waiting at Texas (’08-’10). He also was the DC at Auburn (’06-’07) and LSU (’02-’04) and he spent ’05 in the NFL (Miami assistant HC on D).

10. Mark Richt, Georgia
Mark Richt is now in his 12 ssn here and earned SEC COY honors in ’02 and ’05. He was the OC at Florida St from ’94-’00 and last year was under heavy fire after the Bulldogs started the season 0-2. Richt would then guide them to 10 straight wins earning a trip to the SEC Title Game for the 4th time in his tenure here.

If you want to check out more on coach’s salaries make sure you check out the USA Today database.

Also make sure you are checking out my updated 2012 Draft Preview with a position by position outlook, draft order, team needs and a whole lot more.

Don’t forget to check out our Spring Central section to get 2012 schedules, coaching changes, who’s back/who’s not and all the NFL Draft early entrants.

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