Dave Aranda's new salary at LSU will pay him more than many notable head coaches
Credit LSU for doing what needed to be done to keep arguably the nation’s best defensive coordinator from jumping ship and joining SEC West rival Texas A&M this week. According to the Houston Chronicle’s Brent Zwerneman, Dave Aranda was the first and only choice of the Aggies once Jimbo Fisher came on as head coach last month.
Considering A&M has proven this offseason that they are willing to pay any price to upgrade the staff in College Station, LSU must have known they needed to make a serious financial commitment to Aranda to keep in him in Baton Rouge.
A four-year deal worth $10 million guaranteed certainly does just that and proved to be enough for LSU to hold on to the program’s best coach. That deal averages $2.5 a year for the defensive coordinator, the most money ever allocated to a single assistant coach in college football.
To put that figure into perspective, the deal would have made Aranda the nation’s No. 47 highest paid head coach in 2017 according to collective coaches contract figures rounded up by USA TODAY Sports. Putting that into further perspective, check out some of the notable coaches that would rank behind Aranda in terms of annual pay last season based on his new deal:
No. 49 – Barry Odom at Missouri ($2.3)
No. 50 – Larry Fedora at North Carolina ($2.2)
No. 52 – Lincoln Riley at Oklahoma ($2.1)
No. 53 – Matt Campbell at Iowa State ($2.1)
No. 55 – Chad Morris at SMU ($2)
No. 56 – Scott Frost at UCF ($2)
No. 61 – Pat Narduzzi at Pitt ($1.8)
No. 72 – Matt Luke at Ole Miss ($1.1)
No. 77 – Charlie Strong at USF ($1)
No. 80 – Lane Kiffin at FAU ($950,000)
While many of these coaches have gotten or will likely get raises to potentially bump them over Aranda’s salary for 2017, it’s still amazing to see where his new contract puts him in terms of salary rank in the nation. Also, taking into account coaches ranked above No. 47 that are no longer employed — such as Bret Bielema, Butch Jones and Jim McElwain, Aranda’s 2018 salary figures to rank right up there with many of the nation’s head coaches.