College sports generate about $11 billion per year, so it is not a surprise that the people in charge of running the athletic programs earn a hefty annual salary for their efforts. Football remains the most popular sport in America; therefore, it is not surprising that football earns the NCAA the most money among all sports. The top coaches in the nation pull in well over $5 million per year, and the highest paid coach makes more than double that. Here are the top 5 highest paid coaches in college football.
5. Rich Rodriguez, University of Arizona
After a successful stint at West Virginia, Rich Rodriguez moved on to Michigan, where he was not able to find much success during his tenure. Nevertheless, Rodriguez was still a highly sought-after coach after his firing from Michigan. The University of Arizona took the leap and offered him $6 million per year to coach the Wildcats. He is currently the highest paid coach in the Pac 12.
4. Urban Meyer, Ohio State University
Despite being the most successful coach in the Big Ten, Urban Meyer is not the highest paid coach in the conference. After putting Utah on the map, Meyer went to Florida, where he and Tim Tebow were able to win two national championships. Since being hired by THE Ohio State University, Meyer has notched his third national title. OSU offered him a significant raise after that, which puts him at an annual salary of $6.4 million.
3. Jim Harbaugh, University of Michigan
The title of highest paid coach in the Big Ten goes to Jim Harbaugh, who was lured away from the NFL after making three consecutive NFC Championship games with the San Francisco 49ers. Now, as coach of Big Blue, the former Wolverine makes $7 million. He better step his game up though, because he has yet to beat Ohio State in three years.
2. Dabo Swinney, Clemson University
Ironically, Dabo Swinney played wide receiver for Alabama when they won the 1992 National Championship. Now, Bama is his biggest rival. Clemson has met up with the Tide in back to back national championship games with each winning one. Swinney makes a whopping $8.5 million per year to coach the Tigers.
1. Nick Saban, University of Alabama
The undisputed king of college football makes an astounding $11.1 million per year, but with four national titles in 10 years at Alabama, Nick Saban has certainly earned every penny. After contemplating leaving for the University of Texas in 2014, Alabama offered him this new contract, in addition to paying off his entire $3 million mortgage.