One of the hottest names in college football coach searches has officially hit the market.
Penn State’s James Franklin agreed to a deal Tuesday that would keep him at the school for the next 10 years, until 2031. Franklin is in his eighth season leading the Nittany Lions.
Franklin has been linked with numerous open coaching contracts, most notably USC and LSU, despite Penn State’s relative struggles this season.
“The future of Penn State is very bright and I am honored to continue as your team’s head coach,” Franklin said. said in a statement. “Nine weeks ago the administration approached me about making a long-term investment in our football program. This prompted many conversations outlining the resources needed to compete at the right level. with the expectations and history of Penn State.”
The Nittany Lions are 7-4 this year and 67-32 during Franklin’s tenure in Happy Valley, with a game against Michigan State in East Lansing set for Saturday.
Here’s everything there is to know about Franklin’s contract renewal, along with how it comes together.
James Franklin details contract, salary
For most of his time at Penn State, Franklin was one of the highest-paid coaches in both the Big Ten and the NCAA, with his $7 million annual salary in the top 10.
Franklin will once again be assured $7 million annually on terms issued by Penn State, plus up to $1 million per year based on certain incentives and bonuses.
Among the incentives and bonuses Franklin will be eligible for an additional $350,000 to win the Big Ten title, $300,000 for a new six-year bowl, and $100,000 if he’s named Big Coach. Ten of the year. The full terms of the contract can be found here.
Notably, Franklin’s buyout if he chooses to leave Penn State for another college or an NFL gig is $12 million if he leaves before April 1, 2022. Then, it drops to $8 million if he stays until December 31, 2022 before dropping to $6 million. after 2023, $2 million after 2024-25 and eventually reduced to just $1 million per year from 2026-2031.
Why did James Franklin sign an extension with Penn State?
A native of Langhorne, Pa. And a former Division II quarterback at East Stroudsburg, Franklin has long been known to Penn State, calling it his “dream job” when he was recruited in 2014.
Penn State was a regular 9-11 winning team during Franklin’s tenure at State College and even won the Big Ten title in 2016. But the Nittany Lions have struggled to keep up with the likes of Ohio State, Alabama and Clemson during that time as good in terms of hiring, facilities, NIL deals, actual results and more.
But that seems likely to change, and that’s the biggest reason why Franklin said he chose to stay at Penn State.
“We were able to create a roadmap of the resources needed to support learning, outreach, Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL), facilities improvements, student housing, etc. Athletes, tech upgrades, recruiting, training desks, and more,” says Franklin.
“This new commitment to our students-athletes, our community and our fans reinforces all the reasons I’m proud to serve as your head football coach for eight years. past and why my commitment to Penn State remains steadfast
James Franklin’s record at Penn State
Franklin seems to have won everywhere he goes. True, he had only one stopover as head coach before going to Penn State, but even as an assistant, Franklin was on successful teams.
His first head coach contract was at Vanderbilt in 2011, a school that had won just two games the previous year and had won only three flops in its more than 100 years of history before Franklin’s arrival.
He immediately returned to the Commodores show, going 6-7 and hitting a bad game in his first year before beating two consecutive 9-4 seasons, culminating in Vanderbilt finishing the ranked season. in both seasons, something that hasn’t happened since 1948. He ended his tenure in Nashville with a 24-15 record.
Franklin then went to Penn State in 2014, where he won 67-32 as he was ready to coach his 100th game against the Nittany Lions. The pinnacle of his tenure so far came in 2016 when the Nittany Lions won the Big Ten title and finished the season in 7th place and led Penn State to 11 wins in three of the four years since 2016-19.
Franklin is one of 13 black coaches currently at the FBS level, being one of the winners in that category. His 91 career FBS wins make him third all-time behind former Houston and Texas A&M coaches Kevin Sumlin (95 career wins) and Stanford’s David Shaw (93 career wins) for most. all the wins of a black FBS coach.