Meyer essentially given $100,000 a year raise

SALT LAKE CITY -- The University of Utah has rewarded
football coach Urban Meyer with a restructured contract after
leading the Utes to their first conference championship in a

The contract, first reported Thursday by The Salt Lake Tribune,
essentially gives Meyer a $100,000 yearly raise, guaranteeing his
annual salary at $500,000.

It also ensures a $25,000 yearly raise and a one-year contract
extension each time the Utes finish with a winning record and
ticket sales equal those from 2002, when Utah finished 5-6 before
Meyer was hired.

"My family is extremely important to me, and I want to raise
them in a great place and this is a great place," the 39-year-old
Meyer said Thursday.

"We're excited to be able to extend Urban's contract, and we're
excited about the future," athletic direct Chris Hill said.

Meyer and Hill signed the contract Friday (May 28), and it was
retroactive to Jan. 1. Copies were obtained Thursday by The
Associated Press through a request under the Government Records
Access Management Act, a process also used by the Tribune.

The new contract includes a $40,000 jump in Meyer's base salary
to $200,000; a $30,000 increase in income from radio and television
to $110,000; and a $30,000 boost in appearances to $190,000.

It also provides a $100,000 retention bonus if Meyer remains at
Utah until May 31, 2009; and either a $100,000 bonus if Utah
participates in a Bowl Championships Series game, a $25,000 bonus
if the Utes play in a bowl game designated for the Mountain West
Conference champion, or a bonus of one month's base salary if Utah
plays in any other bowl game.

The contract calls for a $25,000 bonus if the Utes are listed in
the top 25 of the final AP or USA Today polls, $25,000 if he is
named national coach of the year, $10,000 for MWC coach of the
year, and 5 percent of any increase in revenue for season ticket
sales over an established baseline.

That, the contract says, will be determined based on the revenue
from the previous year's season ticket sales adjusted to reflect
changes in the price and number of games.

Meyer will have to pay the university $250,000 if he leaves
before the end of the contact. However, there is no penalty if he
is named head coach at Michigan, Ohio State or Notre Dame, three
schools chosen by Meyer. He can change that list of schools after
Dec. 12, 2005.

Also tied to the contract is a clause allowing Meyer to leave
without penalty if a new, $6 million indoor practice facility is
not substantially completed by 2005.

"We're just trying to stay competitive in the Mountain West
Conference," Meyer said of the need for the new 74,000-square-foot
facility which would replace an inflatable "bubble" type

"The bubble is not functional, and we need to stay moving in
the right direction," he said.

The Utes finished 10-2 and won the Mountain West and the Liberty
Bowl in their first season under Meyer last year.

Meyer was named the national coach of the year by The Sporting
News, which brought him $75,000 in bonuses. He also was named coach
of the year by the Mountain West Conference after leading Utah to
its first outright conference title since 1957.