Rod Carey took over a tremendously successful Northern Illinois program heading into their big BCS bowl bid in the Orange Bowl against Florida State in 2012 after Dave Doeren decided to leave for NC State. Carey’s first two full seasons leading the program, he continued that success, going a combined 23-5 in 2013 and 2014 with a MAC title in 2014.
The years that followed have been mixed. In 2015, Carey went 8-6 with a loss in the Poinsettia Bowl, followed by a 5-7 campaign in 2016, an 8-5 year and loss in the Quick Lane Bowl in 2017, and a 5-3 start to this season with games remaining at Akron (4-3), home against Toledo (5-4) and Miami of Ohio (3-6), and at Western Michigan (6-3).
According to the Northern Star, Back in January Carey’s contract was quietly extended until 2022. Normally those type of deals are enthusiastically shared with the public and prove to help in recruiting, and stave off interest from other programs, but Carey’s new deal taking him through June of 2022 worth just under $2.4 million over that span, was done quietly between closed doors by athletic director Sean Frazier with no news release or even public board approval.
The article adds that Frazier did consult with university officials to negotiate the contract, and board chair Wheeler Coleman was consulted during the process, but could provide “no written evidence” to back that up.
This isn’t the first time this has happened with Carey’s contract. Following the 8-6 finish to the 2015 season, the article points out that an amendment was added to Carey’s contract aimed at keeping him in DeKalb through June 30, 2020.
Carey’s latest deal will pay him just over $2.4 million total over the next four years.
How NIU closes out this season against some solid competition remains to be seen, but the fact that this, and the last amendment to his contract, wasn’t shared publicly and transparently will leave many to wonder why that has been the chosen course of action by the administration – not just once, but twice now.
Head here to read the Northern Star’s full piece, including when to expect comment from the athletic department.