Kirby Smart, Georgia Agree to New 10-Year Contract Worth $112.5M

Adam WellsJuly 21, 2022

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After leading Georgia to its first national title in 41 years last season, head coach Kirby Smart has been rewarded with a lucrative contract extension.

The school announced a 10-year extension for Smart on Thursday. It runs through the 2031 season and includes total salary compensation worth $10.25 million in 2022 with annual increases that culminate in a $12.25 million salary in the final year of the deal.

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ESPN's Chris Low noted the total value of the extension is $112.5 million.

Per Oliver Hodgkinson of Pro Football Network, USC head coach Lincoln Riley had the highest average annual salary ($10 million-plus per season) among college coaches prior to Smart's new deal.

Details of Riley's contract with USC are unknown since the school is a private university and thus not required to disclose employee salaries.

Alabama's board of trustees approved an eight-year extension for Nick Saban last August that pays him an average of $10.6 million per season.

Smart, Saban and Riley are the only coaches known or reported to be making at least $10 million per season.

Smart's extension is the richest in college football history in terms of total value. It surpasses the 10-year deal worth over $100 million that LSU gave Brian Kelly to get him to leave Notre Dame.

Michigan State's Mel Tucker (10 years, $95 million), Texas A&M's Jimbo Fisher (10 years, $94.95 million) and Clemson's Dabo Swinney (10 years, $93 million) are the only other coaches known to have deals worth at least $90 million in total value.

Smart is entering his seventh season as Bulldogs head coach. The 46-year-old worked as Saban's defensive backs coach at LSU in 2004 and then spent 10 consecutive years as an assistant on his staff starting in 2006 with the Miami Dolphins. He followed Saban to Alabama in 2007 and served as defensive coordinator from 2008 to 2015.

The Crimson Tide won four national titles and never ranked worse than seventh in FBS in scoring defense during that span.

Georgia announced Smart's hiring in 2015. He has led the program to a 66-15 record, four SEC East division titles and two appearances in the College Football Playoff National Championship, including a 33-18 win over Alabama last season.

Smart's 66 wins are the fourth-most in school history. His .815 winning percentage is the best by a Bulldogs head coach with at least one full season with the program.


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