Nov. 6, 2013
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - In light of today's national story on head football coaching compensation, the following facts will clarify the compensation structure for Tennessee head football coach Butch Jones.
The annual base salary for Coach Jones is $2.95 million through a term that runs from the 2013 through 2018 seasons (Dec. 7, 2012 through Feb. 28, 2019). Additionally, Jones received a $500,000 signing bonus upon his hiring. Amortizing that figure over the six-year term, that adds an average of $83,333.33 annually to the contract, arriving at what we consider to be an average annual compensation figure for Jones of $3.03 million.
The article on USA Today's website cited a compensation figure for Jones of $4.86 million, which includes a buyout of $1.4 million and uses a methodology that fails to reflect the realities of the nature of coaching searches and hires.
The $1.4 million buyout figure was in Jones' contract at the University of Cincinnati, which we viewed as a necessary expense for the University of Tennessee to secure his services. The article considers this buyout figure as equitable to wages and adds the $1.4 million, as well as the $500,000 signing bonus, into the 2013 figure it will list for Jones. This results in an inflated, and in our opinion, inaccurate, compensation listing for the initial year of the contract.