The 25 Highest-Paid Coaches In College Football

By on November 13, 2017 in ArticlesEntertainment

College football is big business. What was once a sport confined to Saturdays, you can now find college football games on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and even occasionally Wednesday. Television revenue is big business for the NCAA and with increased audiences tuning in, coaches of the country's biggest programs are expected to vie for their conference titles year in and year out. For some schools, the goal is the national championship or jobs are on the line.

The 25 highest-paid college football coaches come from the biggest conferences. There are nine SEC coaches, five coaches from both the Pac-12 and Big Ten, and three coaches from both the ACC and Big 12 on this list. Among them there are 10 national championships from current coaches for Clemson, Florida State, Ohio State,  and Alabama. Among the coaches on this list, Alabama's Nick Saban and Ohio State's Urban Meyer are the winningest and their salaries reflect that. Salaries for the highest paid coaches in college football range from $3.6 million for UCLA's Jim Mora to $11.1 million for Alabama's Nick Saban.

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Top 25 Highest Paid College Football Coaches:

#25. Jim Mora

Salary: $3.6 million

School: UCLA

Conference: Pac-12

Potential Bonus: $1.1 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#24. Kyle Whittingham

Salary: $3.7 million

School: Utah

Conference: Pac-12

Potential Bonus: $935,000

Conference Championships: 5

National Championships: 0

#23. Kirby Smart

Salary: $3.8 million

School: Georgia

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.8 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#22. Mark Stoops

Salary: $3.8 million

School: Kentucky

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $3.1 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#21. Bobby Petrino

Salary: $3.9 million

School: Louisville

Conference: ACC

Potential Bonus: $1.5 million

Conference Championships: 1

National Championships: 0

#20.Butch Jones

Salary: $4.1 million

School: Tennessee

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.0 million

Conference Championships: 4

National Championships: 0

#19. Chris Petersen

Salary: $4.1 million

School: Washington

Conference: Pac-12

Potential Bonus: $1.1 million

Conference Championships: 6

National Championships:0

#18. Mike Gundy

Salary: $4.2 million

School: Oklahoma State

Conference: Big 12

Potential Bonus: $900,000

Conference Championships: 1

National Championships: 0

#17. Bret Bielema

Salary: $4.2 million

School: Arkansas

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.0 million

Conference Championships: 3

National Championships:0

#16. Mark Dantonio

Salary: $4.4 million

School: Michigan State

Conference: Big Ten

Potential Bonus: $650,000

Conference Championships: 3

National Championships: 0

#15. Jim McElwain

Salary: $4.5 million

School: Florida

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $925,000

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#14. Dan Mullen

Salary: $4.5 million

School: Mississippi State

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.2 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#13. Kirk Ferentz

Salary: $4.5 million

School: Iowa

Conference: Big Ten

Potential Bonus: $2.9 million

Conference Championships: 2

National Championships: 0

#12. James Franklin

Salary: $4.6 million

School: Penn State

Conference: Big Ten

Potential Bonus: $1.0 million

Conference Championships: 1

National Championships: 0

#11. Gus Malzahn

Salary: $4.7 million

School: Auburn

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.4 million

Conference Championships: 2

National Championships: 0

#10. Kevin Sumlin

Salary: $5.0 million

School: Texas A&M

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $1.1 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#9. Gary Patterson

Salary: $5.1 million

School: Texas Christian

Conference: Big 12

Potential Bonus: not available

Conference Championships: 6

National Championships: 0

#8. Tom Herman

Salary: $5.5 million

School: Texas

Conference: Big 12

Potential Bonus: $725,000

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#7. David Shaw

Salary: $5.7 million

School: Stanford

Conference: Pac-12

Potential Bonus: not available

Conference Championships: 3

National Championships: 0

#6. Jimbo Fisher

Salary: $5.7 million

School: Florida State

Conference: ACC

Potential Bonus: $1.5 million

Conference Championships: 3

National Championships: 1

#5. Rich Rodriguez

Salary: $6.0 million

School: Arizona

Conference: Pac-12

Potential Bonus: $2.0 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#4. Urban Meyer

Salary: $6.4 million

School: Ohio State

Conference: Big Ten

Potential Bonus: $775,000

Conference Championships: 5

National Championships: 3

#3. Jim Harbaugh

Salary: $7.0 million

School: Michigan

Conference: Big Ten

Potential Bonus: $1.3 million

Conference Championships: 0

National Championships: 0

#2. Dabo Swinney

Salary: $8.5 million

School: Clemson

Conference: ACC

Potential Bonus: $1.0 million

Conference Championships: 3

National Championships: 1

#1. Nick Saban

Salary: $11.1 million

School: Alabama

Conference: SEC

Potential Bonus: $700,000

Conference Championships: 8

National Championships: 5

Articles Written by Amy Lamare
Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based writer covering business, technology, entertainment, philanthropy, and pop culture. She spent 8 1/2 years covering the entertainment industry for www.hsx.com. She attended the University of Southern California where she majored in Creative Writing. An avid long distance runner, weekends she can be found running the streets of Los Angeles training for 1/2 and full marathons. Follow her on Facebook.
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