UGA Tags Smart With Record Breaking Contract
After guiding Georgia football to its first national championship in 41 years, coach Kirby Smart has agreed to a new 10-year contract that will pay him a record $112.5 million through the 2031 season.
Sources told ESPN that the $112.5 million total would be the most ever paid to a college football coach. Smart's average salary of $11.25 million would also be tops among coaches. The university announced the long-anticipated contract extension Thursday. Smart will make $10.25 million this season, with his salary rising to $12.25 million by 2031.
"This is home for us, our roots run deep here," Smart said in a statement. "My commitment to this university and our football program is unwavering. I'm thankful to president Jere Morehead and [athletic director] Josh Brooks for their continued support of Georgia football. It's an honor being the head football coach at the University of Georgia, and while I'm certainly proud of what we've been able to accomplish, I'm confident the best is yet to come!"
LSU lured Brian Kelly away from Notre Dame with a 10-year, $95 million contract that will pay him $9 million this season. Texas A&M's Jimbo Fisher agreed to a four-year extension in August that will pay him $90 million over the next 10 years, and Clemson's Dabo Swinney agreed to a 10-year, $93 million deal in April 2019. Alabama's Nick Saban signed an extension in August that will pay him an average of $10.6 million through 2028.
Michigan State also gave Mel Tucker a 10-year, $95 million contract extension in November.
Smart, 46, agreed to a seven-year, $49 million extension in May 2018 that almost doubled his compensation from his original contract.
"Coach Smart's impact on the University of Georgia extends far past his significant accolades as our head football coach," Brooks said in a statement. "He and his wife [Mary Beth] are Bulldogs through and through, and it is evident that Athens and UGA mean as much to him as he means to us. I am excited for our football program's continued success under his direction. The future of Georgia football remains bright with Coach Smart as its steadfast leader."
A former Georgia defensive back, Smart has guided his teams to a 66-15 record in six seasons. His teams have reached the CFP twice and have played in five straight CFP or New Year's Six bowl games. During his tenure, Georgia has won four SEC East titles and one SEC championship, in 2017.