The University of Minnesota formalized the hiring of Jerry Kill as its football coach, announcing Tuesday that the two have agreed on a seven-year contract that pays $1.2 million a year in base salary and compensation for media appearances and endorsements.
Kill, whose first season has yielded just one victory, succeeded Tim Brewster as the Gophers' 27th head football coach on Dec. 6.
"Coach and I and President [Eric] Kaler assessed the status of the program and the commitment we felt was needed, and of convincing Coach Kill that we are committed," athletic director Joel Maturi said. "Quite honestly, we can't afford the salary that some other institutions are able to afford, but our commitment to him was in the number of years, and I think he was pleased with that."
The contract runs through February 2018 and supplants a "memorandum of agreement" that he had been working under that was paying him at a rate of $1.1 million annually.
The new deal also includes a buyout of $600,000 per season for each year unfulfilled. There are also numerous performance-based incentives including winning the Big Ten ($150,000), reaching five conference victories ($50,000) and additional bonuses of $25,000 for the sixth and subsequent victories in a season.
There are also bonuses spelled out based on the team's academic achievements.
"Rebecca and I, along with our family and staff, are very thankful to the university and certainly to our administration, including director of athletics Joel Maturi and president Eric Kaler," Kill said in a statement released by the school. "I'm glad it's now settled and we can move on from here. We are excited about the future of our program."
Along with a difficult start on the field (0-3 in the Big Ten and 1-6 overall), Kill has been battling seizures that have kept him from practices but not from taking the sidelines during games this season.
Staff writer Phil Miller contributed to this report.
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