Spurrier, Tanner get six-figure raises

COLUMBIA — South Carolina football coach Steve Spurrier and baseball coach Ray Tanner each received six-figure raises Friday after leading their teams where they had never been before.


The university Board of Trustees voted to give Spurrier a $475,000 raise, boosting his salary to $3.3 million a year after the football team won 11 games last season for the first time in school history. Tanner, whose team won a second consecutive national championship, received a $140,000 raise and a one-year contract extension to 2016 for a deal that now pays him $650,000 a year.

"A key element of having a nationally prominent program that competes for championships is having a top-notch coaching staff, and I think we have that in place at South Carolina," said athletic director Eric Hyman.

The trustees also approved new contracts for all eight of Spurrier's assistants. The four who remain on his staff from last season all got raises.  Spurrier finally got his wish for all eight of his assistants to have two-year contracts.

The highest paid assistant will be Lorenzo Ward, who was put in charge of the defense before this year's 30-13 win over Nebraska in the Capital One Bowl. Ward will be paid $550,000 in 2012, a $270,000 increase from what he made the year before.

Offensive line coach Shawn Elliot got a $115,000 raise to $300,000; wide receivers coach Steve Spurrier Jr. got a $75,000 raise to $300,000; and defensive line coach Brad Lawing will get an extra $50,000 in 2012 to now make $300,000.

Special teams coordinator and tight ends coach Joseph Robinson will be the best paid new assistant at $280,000. Running backs coach Everette Sands and linebackers coach Kirk Botkin will each make $185,000, while secondary coach Grady Brown will make $150,000.

South Carolina's eight assistants will make a combined $2.25 million, which is just a little more than Clemson is paying its top two assistants. The Tigers offensive coordinator Chad Morris got a raise to $1.3 million for next year, while new defensive coordinator Brent Venables will be paid $800,000 in 2012.

Spurrier's new contract also reconfigures some of his incentives. The Head Ball Coach will still get $50,000 if the team wins nine games and $100,000 if the Gamecocks win 10 games. But now, Spurrier will also get $200,000 if his team has 11 victories and $300,000 if the Gamecocks win 12 games. The new deal also has the Outback Bowl join the Capital One Bowl, Cotton Bowl. Chic-Fil-A Bowl and any BCS bowl as games where Spurrier will get an extra $100,000. He gets an extra $50,000 for any other bowl appearance.

Hyman called negotiations with Spurrier "very reasonable and very fair."

"He is so excited about achieving things that have never been achieved," Hyman said.

Tanner's deal remains basically the same. The university is maintaining a $56,000 payment it was making to the coach's deferred compensation plan, but he can now decide where he wants the money to go. Tanner also will be named a special adviser to the president for community relations.

Hyman also had his deal restructured, although his salary did not change. The new deal eliminates Hyman's $325,000 buyout. It also requires the university to give him a teaching job if he is fired before July 2015. The new contract also Hyman and the university to come to an agreement if his contract will be extended beyond its current June 2015 end date by June 2014.

The trustees also received updates on several athletics projects. Officials said construction should be completed before the 2012 season starts on the new $6 million video board at Williams-Brice Stadium and the $30 million tailgating area across the street at the old State Farmer's Market site. The new area will be called the Garnet Way. It will include a walkway to the stadium lined with special oaks whose leaves turn scarlet in the fall. The football team and band will walk through the corridor before home games.

"That's the place to be before a Gamecock football game, with the cheerleaders and the band and the football team," Hyman said.

Long-term plans include new practice fields by the 2015 season and a $14 million indoor football facility on the old farmer's market land.



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