Ryan Day has reached $450,000 in bonuses, could add more

Joey Kaufman
jkaufman@dispatch.com
Coach Ryan Day leads the Ohio State football team onto the field for the Big Ten championship game Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. [Joshua A. Bickel]

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.

jkaufman@dispatch.com

@joeyrkaufman

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