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A Comparison of SEC Coaches Salaries for 2011

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With the onset of Spring Practice around the Southeastern Conference, the contracts for almost all of the coaches have gotten taken care of as well. The SEC continues to rule the roost when it comes to compensating its coaches and nowhere is that more evident than in the ultra-competitive SEC West.

The bounty from Auburn's 2010 BCS National Championship certainly extended to the coaching staff. Offensive Coordinator Gus Malzahn's new $1.3 million salary is more than three times what he made the year prior and more than enough to make him the highest-paid assistant in college football. Head Coach Gene Chizik, whose base salary was $2.1 million last year before bonuses from the national title, saw his annual paycheck increase by 50%.

Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban's $6.1 million pay for 2010 made him college football's highest-paid coach and among the best compensated in the sport. The massive increase over 2009's $5.2 million figure was largely due to restructuring of how the payments of specific bonuses were timed. Saban's annual salary is $4.6 million and his 2011 pay is expected to be back on par with last year's figure.

Last week the UA trustees green-lighted a slew of new contracts for Saban's assistants that kept the Crimson Tide staff among the best-paid in the nation. That included a $62,000 raise for Crimson Tide DC Kirby Smart which makes him at No. 2 in pay among SEC assistants and the lead  among the conference's defensive coordinators. OC Jim McElwain got a $100,000 raise that put him in the top quarter of the conference for his position in terms of pay.

While Florida might be saving $1.3 million a year in exchanging Head Coach Urban Meyer for former Longhorn's DC Will Muschamp, the pay to the assistants on the staff has increased substantially. New OC Charlie Weis's salary is more than double that of Steve Addazio's and Dan Quinn's cool half mil is $80,000 more than former DC Teryl Austin's annual haul.

Over in Starkville, the panjandrums at Mississippi State were so happy with Dan Mullins' performance they more than doubled his salary in the off-season to $2.7 million putting him on-par with Florida's new HC and firmly in the middle of the conference's pay scale. New Bulldogs DC Chris Wilson will pull in $300,000 this year; $100,000 more than former DC Manny Diaz who left for Texas and $60,000 more than his previous salary on the staff.

In Arkansas, the rewards of the Ryan Mallett experience weren't nearly as lucrative as the blessing Cam Newton bestowed upon the Plains but they were not insubstantial either. Petrino saw his $2.7 million salary get increased by almost a third and OC Garrick McGee had an additional $125K per year in his stocking.

Les Miles held pat on his $3.751 million per year but new OC Steve Kragthorpe's $700,000 marks a quarter-million-dollar pay hike for the position previously occupied by Cary Crowton. DC John Chavis saw a $100,000 raise for his efforts over the past year.

To help everyone keep track at home, we've compiled a chart comparing the pay for the conference's head coaches, offensive coordinators and defensive coordinators. It was assembled using the USA Today's Coaches' Salary Database for 2010 as a baseline. That report was assembled from a variety of sources and published last December. From that we have scoured newspaper items for updates on salaries for each position. A list of these articles with links is below the jump.

The figures represent base salary and guaranteed provisions where they could be determined. Several of these figures are proposed numbers awaiting approval by the schools in question. Given the wide variety of sources and conflicting information on some of the figures, this list should be treated as a rough comparison of the various teams coaches salaries rather than a definitive listing of the pay figures. The pay chart for last year can be found here.

Team Head Coach Offensive Coordinator Defensive Coordinator



Nick Saban
$6.1 million
Jim McElwain
Kirby Smart



Bobby Petrino
$3.56 million
Garrick McGee
Willy Robinson



Gene Chizik
$3.5 million
Gus Malzahn
$1.3 million
Ted Roof



Will Muschamp
$2.7 million
Charlie Weis
Dan Quinn



Mark Richt
$2.8 million†
Mike Bobo
Todd Grantham



Joker Phillips
$1.7 million†
Randy Sanders
Steve Brown



Les Miles
$3.75 million
Steve Kragthorpe
John Chavis



Houston Nutt
$2.7 million
David Lee
Tyrone Nix


Miss. State

Dan Mullen
$2.65 million
Les Koenning
Chris Wilson


South Carolina

Steve Spurrier
$2.8 million
Shawn Elliott*
Ellis Johnson**



Derek Dooley
$2 million
Jim Cheney
Justin Wilcox



James Franklin
John Donovan
Bob Shoop

Information reflects 2010 salary figures. Unable to confirm if these are the same or have increased for 2011.

* South Carolina's HC, Steve Spurrier, acts as the offensive coordinator. Shawn Elliott is run game coordinator and offensive line coach.

**Ellis Johnson is South Carolina's assistant head coach in charge of defense. The defensive coordinator is a separate position.

*** As a private institution Vanderbilt is not obligated to release salary figures for its employees.

UPDATED 4/18 - Includes Steve Spurrier's new salary.

UPDATED 6/13 - Includes Gene Chizik's and Ted Roof's new salaries.


"NSLI Coaches Salary Database." USA Today Dec. 26, 2010.

Associated Press "Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen gets contract extension, pay raise." The Birmingham News Dec. 30, 2010.

Associated Press "Arkansas secures Petrino through 2017 season." CBS Dec. 11, 2010.

Berkowitz, Steve "Auburn football staff to make $4 million." USA Today June 13, 2011

Deas, Tommy "Nick Saban highest-paid college coach." The Tuscaloosa News Dec. 9, 2010.

Deas, Tommy "McElwain a candidate for Texas offensive coordinator" The Tuscaloosa News Dec. 10, 2010.

Goldberg, Charles "Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzhan signs multi-year deal worth $1.3 million annually." Dec. 13, 2010.

Gould, Izzy "Alabama Coaches contracts approved." The Birmingham News, March 31, 2011

Haney, Travis "Board Approves Raise for Spurrier." The Post and Courier, April 16, 2011.

Helman, David "LSU football coach Les Miles agrees to seven-year contract with Tigers." The Times-Picayune Jan. 12, 2011.

Kleinpeter, Jim "LSU proposes hefty deal for Kragthorpe." The Times-Picayune Feb. 25, 2011

Lieser, Jason "OC Charlie Weis is highest-paid Florida assistant at $2.6M over three years, many on 1-year deals." The Palm Beach Post Gator Bytes Blog Feb. 25, 2011.

Miller, David "MSU football assistant coaches get raises." The Dispatch, March 11, 2011

Moore, Randy "Wilcox will be back.", Jan. 1, 2011.

Neiswanger, Robbie "Football: McGee in line for a pay raise." Jan. 27, 2011.

Novy-Williams, Eben and Curtis Eichelberger "Auburn Football Coach Gene Chizik Earns $600,000 Bonus With National Title." Bloomberg Jan. 10, 2011.

Veazey, Kyle "Rebel assistants to cost about $445K more in '11." The Clarion Ledger Feb. 4, 2011.

Ward, Austin "Dooley's pay raise remains unclear." The Knoxville News Sentinel Jan. 12, 2011.

Weiberg, Steve and Steve Berkowitz "Big season brings bonuses to football assistants in Oregon." USA Today Dec. 21, 2010.