EUGENE, Ore. — One day after securing program's highest-rated recruiting class, the Oregon Ducks landed their most important signing: head coach Mario Cristobal.
The school's board of trustees unanimously approved a new six-year, $27.3 million contract that runs through at least January of 2026. He could earn an extra year at $5 million if the Ducks win the Pac-12 North Division or have a nine-win season over the next three years.
His average salary over the next six seasons is $4.55 million, making him the fourth highest-paid head coach in the Pac-12 conference. According to The Athletic, it's the biggest contract the Oregon athletic department has ever done. The deal is being financed through private gifts.
There are a few performance incentives Cristobal could hit based on the team's success and he'll also receive retention bonuses. Cristobal's base salary was $2.7 million. Beginning Jan. 15, his salary will increase to $4.3 million.
If Cristobal leaves before the contract is up, his buyout is $9 million through Jan. 14, 2022. It decreases annually after that.
"I am humbled and honored to be part of the best college football program in the country,” Cristobal said in a statement from the University of Oregon. “The tremendous commitment from the university and our administration to our student-athletes, coaches, and support staff is unmatched and has been unwavering since day one. I am grateful to President Schill and Rob Mullens for all of their support and for entrusting our staff with the future of Oregon football. We are just getting started, and I am fired up to relentlessly work and build upon the success so far. We are privileged to call Oregon home, and we love the sense of family and community here at Oregon. We will continue to work tirelessly to elevate the Oregon football program to the next level, and we can’t wait to see the best fans in the nation back in Autzen Stadium next fall. Go Ducks!”
Cristobal was named head coach of the Ducks on Dec. 8, 2017. He is 24-9 while the head coach at Oregon, including a Pac-12 and Rose Bowl championship last season. He also earned Pac-12 coach of the year honors by the Associated Press that season.
“Mario has been a tremendous leader, and we are excited that he will continue to lead Oregon Football,” said University of Oregon Athletic Director Rob Mullens. “He has built a strong culture and foundation within our program in a very short period of time and I am confident we will continue to build upon the success we have experienced so far and reach even greater heights. We look forward to the future of Oregon Football under Mario’s continued leadership.”