Skip to main content
Publish date:

Charts: How head coach and assistant pay have grown in the past five years

Coaches at the highest levels of college football are making more money today than they ever have. It seems incomprehensible that the typical FBS salary will grow by the same percentage from 2018 to 2023 as it did from 2013 to 2018 but, hey, we said the same thing in 2013 and look where we are today.

The good folks at Athletic Director U have done a deep dive into head coaching and assistant coaching salaries, and the results are interesting. Particularly interesting: how the relationship between a head coach's salary and his assistant salary pool have or have not changed from 2013 to 2017.

Want to see what I'm talking about? Let's break out some charts!

Let's start with the ACC. As recently as 2014, a head coach made significantly less than his collective assistants, averaging around $2.6 million for himself and a little over $3 million for his assistants. But by 2017 the ratio has flipped. The assistants collectively make $3.6 million while the head man's salary has skyrocketed past $4 million.


This period also coincides with the aftermath of Florida State's and Clemson's national championships.

Now let's look at the Big 12, where the opposite has happened in short order. The typical Big 12 assistant salary pool in 2015 was $2.8 million, in comparison to a head coach's salary hovering around $3.3 million. Two years later, the average head coach's salary has actually gone slightly down while the assistant pool has shot past the $3.3 million mark.

Big 12

The other three Power 5 leagues have remained largely in sync.

Big Ten

Finally, here's an easy breakdown of the assistant coaching pay across FBS.


For a much more in depth breakdown and more charts, click over to the full study.