The top-paid college basketball coach resides right here in the Bluegrass at the University of Kentucky. His earning comes without hesitation or debate. After all, he took hold of a program that was all but destroyed by the former regime and immediately turned it into a winner. There isn’t much Big Blue Nation wouldn’t give for that to have happened. His achievements are extensive, posting a .841 winning percentage in his time at Kentucky, along with an Elite Eight, a Final Four, and a National Title to boot.
His incomparable success prompted a 2011 contract extension that provides a hefty $3.8 million per year, with a $1 million supplement in bonuses for each year he remains at the helm, with the exception of 2015 and 2018.
But that’s just the start. A slew of performance bonuses are built into his contract — just like new football head coach Mark Stoops received in his deal that rewards him for winning — that pays Calipari up to $850,000 in added income each season.
Obviously last season Calipari cashed in on just about all of those items after winning a title, earning $4.6 million from the University, and $700,000 in bonuses. The deep run in March combined with the banner earned Calipari $5.3 million.
Already with nine losses, tying the 2010-11 Kentucky campaign for total losses; barring an unprecedented run through March where the Cats win it all, this will be Calipari’s worst team based on win-loss record since his 2004 Memphis team went 22-16.
And that means mucho menos denero.
Translation: much less money.
With Kentucky bouncing around on the tournament bubble, Calipari’s income may come back down to earth — as if you can call a $3.8 million salary normal.