Hugh Freeze ninth-highest paid coach in college football

Published 11:20 am Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Jim Harbaugh, Nick Saban and Urban Meyer are at the top of the list when it comes to the highest-paid coaches in college football, but Hugh Freeze isn’t far behind.

Ole Miss’ coach comes in at No. 9 nationally on USA Today’s updated college football salary database. Freeze, in his fifth year at the helm, is making $4,703,500 this year with $3,500 in what the database lists as “other pay” added to his $4.7-million base salary. Freeze also earned $300,000 in bonuses after leading the Rebels to their first 10-win season since 2004 and a Sugar Bowl win last season.

Freeze received a raise from $4.3 million and had his contract extended through 2019 after last year’s success. His salary will increase by $150,000 each year of his contract following the 2016 season.

Ole Miss increased its win total by one each of the first four seasons under Freeze, going from 7-6 in 2012 to 10-3 a season ago. That won’t happen this year as the Rebels sit at 3-4 overall and 1-3 in the Southeastern Conference entering Saturday’s game against No. 15 Auburn (6:15 p.m., SEC Network).

Ole Miss is riding its first losing streak since 2014 following last week’s 38-21 loss at LSU.

Freeze’s salary is the fourth-highest among Southeastern Conference coaches behind Saban ($6,939,395), who’s won four national championships at Alabama and has the Crimson Tide ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press top 25, Texas A&M’s Kevin Sumlin ($5 milllion) and Auburn’s Gus Malzahn ($4,729,500).

Harbaugh, in his second year at Michigan, is the highest-paid coach in the nation at $9,004,000. The Wolverines are right behind Alabama at No. 2 in the AP poll.

Meyer ($6,094,800), Oklahoma’s Bob Stoops ($5,550,000) and Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher ($5,250,000) round out the top-5 salaries this year, respectively.