Urban Meyer set to be latest coach to make more than $7M a season

FILE – In this Dec. 31, 2016, file photo, Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer takes off his headset during the second half of the Fiesta Bowl NCAA college football game against Clemson, in Glendale, Ariz. A three-way quarterback derby promises to lend some intrigue to Ohio State’s spring practice that opened on Tuesday, March 6, 2018. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

Welcome to the $7 million club, Urban Meyer.

The Ohio State coach will make $7.6 million per season after a two-year contract extension through 2023 was preliminarily approved by a school committee on Thursday. Meyer’s contract will be official on Friday when it’s ratified by the Ohio State board. That will be a formality. You don’t offer your football coach that much money if the board won’t approve it.

The extension makes Meyer the third-highest paid coach in college football and the highest-paid coach in the Big Ten, according to Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith.

“He deserves to be paid number one in our league, because he’s number one in the league,” Smith told the Columbus Dispatch.

Meyer’s salary ranks behind Alabama coach Nick Saban, who made $11 million in 2017 thanks to some contract provisions. Clemson coach Dabo Swinney made $8.5 million a year ago while Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh was at just over $7 million.

With Meyer moving into the top three, the three highest-paid coaches in college football will be the coaches of the only winners in College Football Playoff history. Ohio State won the trophy after the 2014 season, Alabama won in 2015 and 2017 and Clemson knocked off the Tide in 2016.

Fourth on the 2018 list will likely be new Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher, who received a 10-year $75-million contract from the school. Fisher won the BCS Championship after the 2013 season with Florida State. It’s indisputable that a national title — or trips to Europe, in the case of Harbaugh — will get you a lot of money as a college football coach.

Meyer was already in the upper echelon of college coaching salaries before the extension. He made approximately $6.5 million in 2017 per USA Today’s salary database, fourth among all coaches but behind Harbaugh. Your move, Michigan. Do you really want to lose to Ohio State in the college football coach salary race?

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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