Like the other three coaches whose teams made the College Football Playoff, the first-year Ohio State football coach makes more money as his team reaches new milestones.
Ryan Day will receive at least $450,000 in bonuses from his first full season as Ohio State’s football coach, according to a copy of his contract obtained by The Dispatch through a public-records request.
Day picked up a majority of the bonus payments over the weekend as the Buckeyes clinched a spot in the College Football Playoff.
As outlined by the contract’s incentive structure, he is eligible to receive $250,000 if the Buckeyes reach the semifinals of the playoff, a four-team field that was revealed Sunday. A victory over Wisconsin in the Big Ten championship game on Saturday netted Day a bonus of $100,000.
Day previously positioned himself to receive separate bonuses of $50,000 for a Big Ten East title and Big Ten coach of the year recognition.
His base salary this season is $4.5 million, a smaller figure compared with his predecessor, Urban Meyer, who made $7.6 million in his final season in 2018 as one of the highest-paid coaches in college football.
If the Buckeyes beat Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl and reach the national championship game, Day will receive another $100,000.
An appearance in the national title game puts him in line for a $350,000 bonus, which replaces his $250,000 bonus for a semifinal appearance. He is not eligible for a bonus for a national championship.
Other head coaches for teams that reached the College Football Playoff were also headed for hefty paydays, led by LSU coach Ed Orgeron.
According to a tally from USA Today, Orgeron will receive more than $1 million in bonuses, while Clemson coach Dabo Swinney and Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley were up to bonus payments of $400,000 and $300,000, respectively.