Coach Butch Jones received a three-year contract extension on Tuesday and a raise for leading Cincinnati to a share of the Big East title and a victory over Vanderbilt in the Liberty Bowl.
The university’s board of trustees approved a deal that had been in the works for months.
Jones took the job after Brian Kelly left for Notre Dame after leading Cincinnati to back-to-back league titles and berths in the Orange Bowl and Sugar Bowl. The Bearcats won only four games in Jones’ first season, but followed with 10 wins and a share of a third title last season.
The extension runs through the 2017 season and includes raises that will bring his annual salary to $2.05 million by 2017. He also will get annual bonuses for staying of up to $300,000 per year.
Whit Babcock started working on the extension when he became the director of athletics three months ago, impressed by how Jones recovered from the four-win season.
”We had one of the biggest turnarounds, if not the biggest turnaround, in the country,” Babcock said. ”He fits the imprint of what we want here.”
The Bearcats tried to keep Kelly by giving him a contract extension before the 2009 season. Kelly took the Notre Dame job six months later.
Jones left Central Michigan to replace Kelly and received a five-year deal through the 2014 season. He was supposed to make $1.1 million in 2012 under his original deal.
The new contract bumps his salary to $1,575,000 for 2012. It will go up to $1.6 million each of the following two years, $1.65 million in 2015, $1.7 million in 2006 and $2.05 million in 2017. He will get a $300,000 bonus after each of the 2013, 2015 and 2016 seasons if he stays at Cincinnati.
The pool for assistant coaches’ salaries also was raised.