Coach cashes in on titles, awards, longevity

Updated: May 6, 2005, 7:37 PM ET
Associated Press

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Coach Urban Meyer has extra incentive to win and to stay at Florida.

Meyer could earn up to $450,000 in bonuses by winning the Southeastern Conference, the national title and some postseason coaching awards in the same year, according to his contract released Friday.

He also has a longevity clause that would pay him a total of $2.1 million for remaining at the school for the duration of the seven-year, $14 million contract he agreed to in December, but didn't sign until April 20.

Although Meyer's deal is fairly similar to the one former Gators coach Ron Zook signed in 2002, most of the perks are more sizable.

Meyer received a $500,000 signing bonus, which was $375,000 more than Zook got.

Meyer will get a $60,000 annual expense account, triple the amount Zook received.

The new coach will get $100,000 annually for family education expenses, something Zook didn't even have in his contract.

But the biggest difference might be the longevity clause, another incentive Zook didn't have.

Meyer would get a $250,000 lump sum payment for staying through the end of the 2006 season. He would get an additional $500,000 after 2007, $250,000 after 2008, $500,000 following the 2009 season and then $600,000 for sticking around through 2011.

Meyer also has better bowl bonuses than Zook had.

Meyer would earn $75,000 for winning the SEC championship game, $100,000 for going to the Bowl Championship Series, $150,000 for making the BCS title game and $250,000 for winning the national championship game.

He also has incentives for being named SEC or national coach of the year by The Associated Press, and for finishing in the top 10 in either the AP or coaches' poll.

Meyer's contract also allows him a small window from the end of the regular season until Jan. 2 to pursue another job, and he can walk away without having to pay Florida any compensation. Should the school fire Meyer, though, he would receive $1 million for each year remaining on his contract.

Meyer's base salary begins at $225,000 for the 2005 season and increases about $7,000 each year thereafter. He also receives $500,000 a year for his apparel contract, $300,000 annually for his radio and television contract and $200,000 annually for speaking to the school's booster clubs.


Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press