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A new contract, with some perks

By ANTONYA ENGLISH
Published May 7, 2005


Negotiating a new contract? Take some tips from Urban Meyer.

The new Florida football coach covered all the bases in his recently finalized deal, from a bonus just for sticking around to money for his children's education. How about cars for you and the spouse?

It's all covered in the deal, which was obtained Friday by the Times through a public records request.

Year by year

2005: $1,985,000

2006: $1,741,750

2007: $1,998,702

2008: $1,980,863

2009: $2,238,238

2010: $1,745,835

2011: $2,353,660

2005 breakdown

BASE SALARY: $225,000

TV, RADIO: $300,000

APPEARANCES: $200,000

APPAREL: $500,000

SIGNING BONUS: $500,000

INVESTMENTS: $100,000

EXPENSE ACCOUNT: $60,000

EDUCATIONAL EXPENSES FOR FAMILY: $100,000

Cool perks

The use of two cars with insurance paid. 12 game tickets plus the right to buy up to 40 more.

A $250,000 bonus if the Gators win the BCS title, $150,000 more than former coach Ron Zook would have received. The $60,000 expense account is $40,000 more than Zook's. $100,000 buys a lot of education in Gainesville.

Bonus baby

Meyer's contract includes an initial signing bonus then a "longevity incentive" ranging from $250,000 to $600,000 for most of the remaining years.

Your taxes at work

Though Meyer will average about $2-million a year, most of the money comes from the private University Athletic Association. Only his base salary, which starts at $225,000 and climbs roughly $7,000 a year, will come from state funds.

Keeping him close

Meyer has a small window for job hunting. He can negotiate directly or indirectly with another prospective employer (college or pro) only between the final day of the regular season and Jan.2 of each year, similar to a clause former coach Steve Spurrier had in his contract.

Won't leave empty-handed

If he's fired, Meyer gets $1-million for each year left on his contract.

How they stack up

Meyer is the highest-paid college coach in the state. Some others: FSU's Bobby Bowden $1.85-million, Miami's Larry Coker $1.4-million and USF's Jim Leavitt $568,080. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported Coker is negotiating a new deal. Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops is the highest paid overall at $2.3-million.

Second coming?

Meyer's deal is comparable with the $2.1-million Spurrier received before jumping to the NFL. Spurrier's deal with South Carolina has been reported at $1.25-million with incentives that could inflate it to $2-million.