Matt Campbell, Iowa St. Agree to New 6-Year, $22.5M Contract After 7-5 Season

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 27, 2017

Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell looks at the scoreboard during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Kansas State in Manhattan, Kan., Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)
Orlin Wagner/Associated Press

Iowa State Cyclones head coach Matt Campbell signed a six-year, $22.5 million extension with the school, Iowa State announced Monday.  

Cyclones athletic director Jamie Pollard shared the specifics of Campbell's new deal:

Iowa State went 7-5 during the regular season in Campbell's second year on the sideline. The team earned upset victories over the third-ranked Oklahoma Sooners and fourth-ranked TCU Horned Frogs.

Not only is Campbell's pay raise a reward for the success he has helped deliver in 2017, but it's also a deterrent for any school that's interested in hiring him.

FootballScoop's Zach Barnett reported last Saturday the Nebraska Cornhuskers had Campbell on their radar. ESPN.com's Mark Schlabach (h/t GoVols247's Brad Crawford) reported the Tennessee Volunteers would've given him stronger consideration were it not for the $9.4 million buyout in his previous contract.

Finding a good head coach in college football is difficult, so it makes sense for Iowa State to sweeten Campbell's contract. He inherited a program that won eight combined games in Paul Rhoads' final three years, and he has the Cyclones headed to a bowl game within two seasons.

In the school's press release announcing the extension, Campbell sounded like a coach who's committed to Iowa State for the long term:

"We are just getting started at Iowa State. To see our culture rapidly developing in concert with some excellent incoming recruits, we are developing a foundation for a program on the brink of success. Most importantly, I want to continue this journey and take Iowa State and its fan base to levels it has never reached. Now, it's time to hit the recruiting trail and continue to build on what has been achieved this season."

It will be interesting to see if his mindset remains the same in a few years should his reputation continue to grow at its current rate. 

Iowa State isn't exactly a dormant college football power waiting for the right coach to bring it back to prominence. The Cyclones have never won 10 games in a year, and their last nine-win season was in 2000.

Should Campbell struggle to get Iowa State to a level in which the school is consistently contending for a Big 12 title or possibly entering the College Football Playoff race, then he may relish the challenge a more historically successful program would provide.