Alabama awards Saban new 8-year, $93.6 million contract

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FILE – Alabama head coach Nick Saban speaks with the media during NCAA College Football Media Day Aug. 7, 2022, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. It’s championship or bust for Nick Saban and Alabama, with no pretensions otherwise. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt, File)

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Alabama coach Nick Saban is awarded a new eight-year contract worth at least $93.6 million, eclipsing the recent mega-deal from Southeastern Conference rival Kirby Smart.

The University of Alabama trustee compensation committee on Tuesday approved a one-year extension through Feb. 28, 2030, for Saban, 70, who led the Crimson Tide to six national titles. Saban’s deal averages $11.7 million a year, topping Smart’s $11.25 million salary at defending national champion Georgia.

The announcement comes a month after Smart agreed to a 10-year deal worth more than $110 million. The Bulldogs beat Alabama in the national championship game in January.

The two join Ohio State’s Ryan Day, LSU’s Brian Kelly, Michigan State’s Mel Tucker and Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher as college football coaches who will earn at least $9 million in 2022.

Saban’s deal includes salary and talent fees of $9.9 million this year with annual raises of $400,000. Saban can receive an $800,000 completion bonus at the end of February for each of the next four years, along with other bonuses.

“(Wife) Terry and I greatly appreciate the unparalleled commitment the university has shown to this football program and our family over the past 15+ years,” Saban said in a statement. “This is our home, and we can’t wait to finish our careers in Alabama.”

His contract ensures that his salary will remain at or near the top of the heap among college football coaches.

Saban would get a boost if his deal was less than the average total salary of the three highest-paid Southeastern Conference coaches or the average of what college football’s five paid coaches earn. He would receive the higher of the two averages.

Saban agreed to a three-year extension in June 2021 for $84.8 million over eight years.

Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne gets a three-year extension through June 30, 2029 with a 5% raise. He will earn $1.49 million this year with raises bringing his salary to $1.91 million for 2028-29.

Byrne also got a coach looking for his eighth national title — including one at LSU.

“We are incredibly lucky to have the best football coach in the country and one of the greatest coaches of all time in any sport here in Alabama with Coach Saban,” Byrne said. “Not only have his teams been successful on the field, but they have also achieved great results in the classroom and in the community.

“Beyond that, the impact he and Ms. Terry have had on the University, Tuscaloosa and the State of Alabama cannot be overlooked.”

The financial terms of the contracts become official after formal approval by the University of Alabama System Board of Trustees.

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