Clemson Tigers defensive coordinator Brent Venables has reportedly agreed to the largest contract for an assistant coach in college football.
Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports reported on Wednesday that Venables and the Tigers have come to terms on a five-year, $11.6 million deal. That extension includes a base salary of $2 million per year along with a $200,000 retention bonus over the first two years and a $400,000 retention bonus over the final three years.
LSU Tigers defensive coordinator Dave Aranda ($2.5 million per year) is the highest-paid assistant in terms of average annual value, but Venables ranks No. 1 in terms of total money over the life of a contract.
This past season, Clemson ranked fourth in overall defense and second in scoring defense. The Tigers made it to the College Football Playoff Championship Game in 2015 and 2016 and won their second championship in 2016.
Venables served as an assistant at Kansas State and Oklahoma before moving on to Clemson back in 2012. With him on the coaching staff, the Tigers have become perennial contenders. They have won double-digit games in each of his first six seasons on the job.
He was the winner of the 2016 Broyles Award, given to the nation's top assistant coach.
Venables has yet to lead his own program, but his name has come up during some coaching searches. He made it clear, though, last November that he was comfortable where he was, via Grace Raynor of the Post and Courier:
"Again, I've said that many, many times and I'm very thankful and grateful for that. We're in a great position, so why would I be worried about what's on the other side of the fence? I've always felt that way — and if people have interest, that's part of it. You either decide to listen or not. Right now, we've got a tremendous opportunity this week playing for a championship and my loyalty is to here and our players."
Venables has proved to be one of the best assistant coaches in the nation, and now, he's going to get paid as such.