Vol coaches get pay hikes


Posted Jul 2, 2008


The University of Tennessee Athletics Departments announced new contracts for two of the school’s high profile coaches - Phillip Fulmer and Bruce Pearl - on Monday. Discussions regarding Pat Summitt’s contract are ongoing.

“I can say unequivocally that we have two of the best coaches in America, and I am excited to know they will continue to be ambassadors of our great university for many years to come.  Their roles in the community, as fundraisers for both athletics and the university itself are unparalleled,” said UT President John Petersen.  “UT Athletics has a tremendous economic impact on our University, city and state.  These coaches and their respective programs have helped put UT and Knoxville on the map.”  

Both Fulmer and Pearl received contract extensions and raises.  

All funding for the athletics department, including coaches’ salaries, is from monies generated by athletics’ resources and not from appropriated funding by the state of Tennessee or other university-related revenues.

Phillip Fulmer – Head Football Coach

Fulmer’s new deal is worth $2.4 million for the 2008 season and escalates to $3.3 million in 2014 for an average of $2.99 million a year over the length of the agreement. It includes a $1 million longevity bonus in December 2012 to reward him for his 20 years as head coach of the Vols and automatic raises of $150,000 each year.  He will receive additional automatic raises for meeting certain goals:

- Win the SEC East and play in the SEC Championship Game – an additional $100,000 for a total of $250,000

- Play in a BCS bowl game, but not win the SEC – an additional $150,000 for a total of $300,000

- Win the SEC Championship – an additional $350,000 for a total of $500,000

- Win the BCS National Championship – an additional $850,000 for a total of $1 million.  

Fulmer’s base salary rises from $325,000 to $375,000.  In addition, Fulmer receives monies for radio and television commitments of $900,000, an equipment and apparel fee of $700,000, and an endorsement and appearance fee of $425,000.  In addition to the new raise incentives, Fulmer will also receive the highest bonus allowed based on the achievement of the team.  The level valuation is as follows: $37,500 for a non-BCS bowl, $50,000 for SEC Eastern Division first place tie, $75,000 for SEC Championship game appearance, $100,000 for SEC Championship or appearing in a BCS game, $150,000 for appearing in the BCS National Championship game and $250,000 for BCS National Championship game winner.   

“I am very proud to have Phillip as our coach for many years to come,” said Men’s Athletic Director Mike Hamilton.  “We're fortunate to have such a talented and proven coach leading our program. He and his staff have done a terrific job building on our rich tradition and positioning Tennessee football for the future.”

Tennessee finished the 2007 season as the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division champion, ranked 12th with a 10-3 overall record. Since 1997, no SEC team has won or shared more divisional titles than Tennessee with six (1997, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2007).

During his tenure at Tennessee, Fulmer has recorded a 147-45 career record, winning more than 77 percent of his games. Fulmer averages nearly 9.5 wins per season with six SEC Eastern Division titles during that span and two overall league crowns.  His record leads all active coaches with at least 10 years of experience.  

Since Fulmer has been at the helm of Tennessee’s football program, UT Athletics has seen donations rise from approximately $4 million in 1992 to more than $40 million in fiscal year 2008.   

“More than 85 percent of the athletics departments’ budget – directly and indirectly - is generated through the football program,” Hamilton said. “Coach Fulmer’s success on the field has allowed all 20 sports the opportunity to compete at the highest level.”  

In addition to Fulmer’s new contract, Tennessee announced salaries for the assistant football coaches.  The total salary pool for Fulmer’s assistants increased from $1.72 million for the 2007 season to approximately $1.935 million for the 2008 season.

Coach .......... Title ....................... Salary

Greg Adkins  Offensive Line Coach $200,000

Dan Brooks  Defensive Line Coach  $190,000

Steve Caldwell Defensive Ends Coach  $200,000

John Chavis  Defensive Coordinator  $340,000

Dave Clawson Offensive Coordinator  $340,000

Stan Drayton Running Backs Coach    $170,000

Jason Michael Tight Ends Coach $170,000

Lattrell Scott Wide Receivers Coach  $150,000

Larry Slade Defensive Backs Coach $175,000

*Bruce Pearl – Head Men’s Basketball Coach

Pearl’s new deal is worth $1.6 million for the 2008-09 season and escalates to $2.2 million in 2014. It also includes a $250,000 bonus and an upfront retention bonus of $1.5 million for an average of $2.3 million a year.  The upfront bonus increases Pearl’s buyout to $2.5 million should he chose to leave Tennessee and will incrementally decrease over the next five years to $1 million.

  Pearl’s base salary rises from $325,000 to $350,000.  In addition, Pearl receives $500,000 for radio and television commitments, a $500,000 equipment fee and a $250,000 endorsement fee. 

“Bruce has had a tremendous impact on our basketball program. His energy and enthusiasm have brought new life to Tennessee basketball,” said Hamilton. 

Pearl is leading a major renaissance period in Tennessee basketball history entering his fourth season as the program’s head basketball coach.  UT basketball has been revitalized in terms of fan support, facilities and victories since Pearl’s arrival in March 2005.

In three seasons at Tennessee, Pearl has led the Vols to an average of 25.6 wins per year, two SEC Eastern Division titles, an overall SEC championship, the school’s first No. 1 national ranking, a school record 31 wins and back-to-back appearances in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament. He has been named SEC Coach of the Year twice (2006 and 2008) and earned national coach of the year honors two times.


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