Franklin of Pennsylvania agrees to a $75 million 10-year extension
State College, Pennsylvania. Penn State football coach James Franklin approved a new 10-year contract Tuesday that will secure him at least $75 million through 2031.
Franklin and Ben State’s board of trustees agreed to the terms, which include a $7 million annual base salary, $500,000 annual retention bonuses, and a $1 million annual life insurance loan.
Franklin is 67-32 at Penn State with seven games in the bowl in his eight seasons. Nittany Lions won the Big Ten Championship in 2016.
The Pennsylvania native called Penn State’s gig “the dream job” when he was hired away from Vanderbilt in 2014, and will coach his 100th Pennsylvania State game when the Nittany Lions visit Michigan’s No. 12 on Saturday.
Franklin previously signed a six-year deal in 2019. The terms of that contract would see him earn $5.75 million the next season with an increase of $250,000 for each remaining year.
“Nine weeks ago, management contacted me about making a long-term investment in our football program,” Franklin said in a statement provided by the sports department. “This led to many conversations outlining the resources needed to compete at a level consistent with the expectations and history of Penn State. What is most evident from those conversations is the importance of our student-athletes success on and off the field.”
Franklin was asked several times this season about his name coming up as a candidate for other jobs, notably LSU and USC, and he never dropped them. This contract makes leaving Happy Valley a much more expensive offer for the 49-year-old.
If Franklin leaves for another college or NFL coaching job before April 1, 2022, he will owe Pennsylvania $12 million. If he left between that date and December 31, he would owe $8 million. The acquisition dropped to $6 million in 2023, to $2 million in the next two years and $1 million each year after that.
Although he did not elaborate on details when asked at his weekly press conference on Tuesday, Franklin has long hinted that he would like to see Pennsylvania upgrade some of its older facilities.
“We’ve made, and will need to continue to invest, significant investments in our football program because we believe we have a very bright future under James,” said Penn State Athletics director Sandy Barbour. “With this contract, we confirm our ongoing commitment to being one of the first programs in college football history. Our goals and aspirations for football have never changed and our investments today and in the future of our program will allow us to compete at the highest level.”
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