Colorado athletic director Rick George may have hit a proverbial home run over the weekend as he hired Deion Sanders as the school’s next football coach, but it came with a total cost the school couldn’t pay quite yet if it had to.
Sanders’s deal with Colorado is for five years, $29.5 million, which is an average of $5.9 million per year, per Brian Howell of Buffzone. Sanders will make $5.5 million in year one, and will earn $200,000 raises each year over the life of the contract.
The pay of Sanders far exceeds that of former coach Karl Dorrell, who was paid $3.6 million this season. The $3.6 million that Dorrell earned was previously the most Colorado had ever paid a head coach.
So how exactly will George and Colorado pay for the new contract for Sanders, which is the richest deal in the history of the football program?
“We don’t have the money yet, but I know we’ll have it so I’m not worried about that piece,” George said when asked about Sanders’s contract on Sunday.
While George wasn’t ready to make public the method through which the school will pay Sanders, it does sound like there is some funding lined up for the new coach that will be finalized soon.
Sanders went 27–5 in his three seasons at Jackson State at the FCS level, which was his first collegiate coaching position. The Tigers will play in the Celebration Bowl against North Carolina Central on Dec. 17 in Atlanta, and Sanders confirmed that he will coach the bowl for Jackson State in his final game with the school.
His unquestioned success at Jackson State set him up for an FBS job in the Pac-12, and of course, a big pay day.