— The Sports Xchange —
Auburn coach Gus Malzahn is scheduled to earn $7.3 million in the final year of a seven-year deal he agreed to recently, according to details of the contract released by the school.
Malzahn will make $6.7 million in the first year of the contract, and will get a $100,000 raise every year for the remainder of the deal.
That means he will earn $7.3 million (before bonuses) in 2024, which is the final year of the contract.
If Malzahn were to be fired without cause in any year under that contract, the university would owe him 75 percent of whatever compensation is left.
However, Malzahn would owe Auburn $7 million if he leaves for another job prior to Dec. 3, 2019. That buyout would be reduced by $2 million in each of the following three years. In the last two years of the contract, the buyout would be $1 million.
Malzahn’s salary of $6.7 million in the first year of the deal would have made him the fourth-highest-paid coach in the country in 2017.
According to the USA Today coaches salary database, Alabama’s Nick Saban ($11.2 million), Clemson’s Dabo Swinney ($8.5 million) and Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh ($7 million) were the three highest-paid coaches in 2017, followed by Ohio State’s Urban Meyer at $6.4 million.
In 2017, Malzahn’s was paid a total of $4.7 million, which ranked 11th nationally and third in the SEC.
This past season, Auburn beat both national championship finalists — Alabama and Georgia — during the regular season and won the SEC East championship. However, the Tigers were left out of the College Football Playoff after losing to Georgia in the SEC championship game.
The Tigers finished the season 10-4 and ranked 10th in the final Associated Press poll.
Auburn lost in the national championship game in 2013, Malzahn’s first year at Auburn, and followed with seasons of 8-5, 7-6 and 8-5.