John Calipari Is Now The Highest-Paid Coach In College Sports – Here's How Much He'll Make

By on June 20, 2019 in ArticlesSports News

Earlier this year, John Calipari signed a lifetime deal to remain the head coach of the Kentucky Wildcats for…well, as long as he wants. Of course, you can't just write "for life" on a contract, so there were financial nuances to hash out. Now, the details of Calipari's deal have come out – and he's going to make a ton of money.

Calipari's deal will run through 2029 and pay him $86 million. In the sixth year, he can step down and become either a special assistant to the athletic director or an ambassador for the university.

Calipari is now the highest-paid coach in any college sport. He surpassed Alabama's head football coach Nick Saban. And for good measure, Calipari even makes more than most NBA head coaches.

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The 60-year-old Calipari, who's entering his 11th season at Kentucky, will make $8 million in each of the next two seasons. In 2021, his salary will rise to $8.5 million per year. He'll get another salary raise in 2025 and will start earning $9 million per year.

Prior to the 2024-25 season, Calipari can exercise his option. If he does leave coaching and accept another position at the university, he'll make $950,000 annually.

In his 10 seasons at Kentucky, Calipari has amassed a 305-71 record (an .811 winning percentage). His Wildcats won the national championship in 2012 and have made it to at least the Elite 8 seven times.

Few head basketball coaches truly have 100 percent job security. Not only does Calipari have that, he's getting paid handsomely, too. And that's a great place to be.

Articles Written by Joey Held
If there's a story anywhere in the world of music, sports, or entertainment, Joey wants to tell it. He's been freelancing since 2010, and prior to that, he attended the University of Miami, where he double majored in broadcast journalism and sport administration. A Chicago native, Joey currently resides in Austin, TX. Follow him on Twitter and always feel free to suggest a song for his next karaoke performance. Joey's favorite billionaire is Mark Cuban.
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