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Oklahoma’s contract terms for Lincoln Riley turning heads

Win or lose in Norman, new Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley is financially set for life with a five-year contract worth an average of $3.5 million annually.

And the contract is fully guaranteed, according to Fox Sports, which also reports that is believed to be the biggest fully guaranteed contract ever given to a first-time college football coach.

The University of Oklahoma's Board of Regents approved the contract Tuesday.

Riley succeeds longtime Sooners coach Bob Stoops, the school's all-time winningest coach who unexpectedly retired two weeks ago. The Sooners clearly know what they're getting in Riley, the program's offensive coordinator the past two seasons and the Broyles Award winner as the nation's top assistant coach in 2015. 

But the 33-year-old Riley's deal far exceeds contracts recently given to other first-time coaches. CBS Sports points out Missouri's Barry Odom and Maryland's D.J. Durkin originally had deals worth around $2 million annually.

According to USA Today's NCAA Football coaching salary database, Riley's $3.5 million average salary ranks him just outside the top 25 highest-paid college coaches. By comparison, the database lists veteran Kansas State coach Bill Snyder's annual salary at $3.1 million. 

Riley's base pay for the 2017-18 season is $3.1 million. He'll get a $200,000 raise every Feb. 1, and a $500,000 retention bonus every June 1. If the Sooners win a national championship, Riley will earn a $425,000 bonus.


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