University of Texas Regents Approve Football Coach Steve Sarkisian’s $ 34.2 Million Contract


AUSTIN, Texas – The regents of the University of Texas System approved a guaranteed six-year, $ 34.2 million contract Thursday for new Longhorns football coach Steve Sarkisian.

The regents also approved more than $ 21 million in guaranteed contracts for Sarkisian staff. Three of his top assistants secured three-year guaranteed contracts worth more than $ 1 million a year. The highest paid in that group will be defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski with $ 1.7 million per year.

Sarkisian was hired in early January to replace Tom Herman, who was fired with three seasons and more than $ 15 million remaining on his guaranteed contract. Herman was 32-18 in four seasons, but failed to win a Big 12 championship and was embroiled in controversy on campus over the refusal of some players to sing the school song “The Eyes of Texas.”

Sarkisian, who has the strong backing of Chairman of the Board of Regents Kevin Eltife, has said his players will sing the song “with pride.”

Sarkisian, 46, is a former head coach in Washington and Southern California, and was the offensive coordinator the past two seasons in Alabama, which won the 2020 national championship.

His starting salary in Texas will be $ 5.2 million, increasing to $ 6.2 million in the last year.

Sarkisian’s contract also includes 20 hours of private jet usage per year, $ 250,000 in relocation expenses, a one-time payment of $ 1.2 million on December 31, 2024, if he is still the coach from Texas. The contract also includes unsecured annual performance incentives worth nearly $ 1 million.

Sarkisian is the fourth Texas head coach since the program’s most recent Big 12 championship in 2009. Since then, Texas has fired Mack Brown, the only coach to lead the program to a national championship (2005) in 50 years, Charlie Strong and Germán.

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