From the moment Jim Harbaugh stepped on that private plane from the Bay Area and headed back to Ann Arbor, two things were guaranteed – Michigan was going to make him one of the highest-paid coaches in college football, and it wasn’t going to chain him to his desk if the NFL came calling again.
Thanks to MLive, Michigan released Harbaugh’s full contract on Friday. In a seven-year contract, Harbaugh will earn $5 million in a year ($500,000 in base salary and $4.5 million in additional compensation) and receive 10 percent raises after 2017 and 2019. He also hauled in a $2 million signing bous. This makes Harbaugh the Big Ten’s second-highest paid coach – until Urban Meyer signs his next extension – and joins him with Nick Saban, Mark Dantonio, Bob Stoops, Kevin Sumlin and Charlie Strong in the $5 million club.
Michigan will also negotiate a deferred compensation package after the 2015 season, which interim athletics director Jim Hackett revealed during Harbaugh’s introductory press conference in December.
As for other creature comforts of one the most high-profile jobs in college football, Harbaugh will earn…
-$125,000 for a Big Ten East title
-$250,000 for a Big Ten championship
-$500,000 for a national title
-$300,000 for a national semifinal appearance
-$200,000 for a New Year’s Six appearance
-$50,000 for a Big Ten coach of the year award
-$75,000 for a national coach of the year award
-$150,000 for a team APR of 960 or higher
Plus $4,000 in Adidas apparel, two cars, 25 hours a year of private jet usage, a private box at Michigan Stadium, and reimbursement for the move from Palo Alto to Ann Arbor and up to 180 days of temporary housing.
Harbaugh gets $150,000 if Michigan’s APR is 960. Hoke had it at 975 last year.
— Nick Baumgardner (@nickbaumgardner) January 23, 2015
Now, for the buyout. Should Harbaugh leave for another job, he’d have to return his signing bonus minus the months spent on the job divided by 48. Essentially, it’d be roughly $1.5 million after 2015, $1 million after 2016, $500,000 after 2017 and nothing after that. Nothing that would scare away an NFL team, for sure. He’s also required to disclose any direct or indirect contact with another team within 48 hours of the conversation.
Michigan has also made an investment into Harbaugh’s staff. His assistants (excluding the strength coach) will earn between $4 million and $5 million, with an identical 10 percent bump following 2017 and 2019. Brady Hoke’s staff made just north of $3.5 million in 2014, according to USA Today’s coaching salary database. Harbaugh’s assistants will be the highest-paid in the Big Ten.