Shortly after the conclusion of the 2018 season, Illinois athletic director Josh Whitman put any speculation of Lovie Smith’s job security to bed, extending the head football coach’s contract by two years.
At the time, not many details of Smith’s extension were made available to the public. Recently, the News-Gazette obtained more information regarding the contract.
Per the News-Gazette, Smith’s base compensation for the final two years of the new contract (2022-2023) will be the same as years 3-6, which is $4 million. His buyout for 2019 and 2020 also remain the same, but will decrease drastically in 2021 and 2022.
If terminated in 2019, Smith will be owed $4 million, plus any additional money not collected from the contract year. The buyout in 2020 will be $2 million, along with any remaining money from the contract year, as well.
The total drops to $1 million if Smith is let go in the 2021 or 2022 seasons.
Smith completed his third season as the head coach of the Illini, finishing the season 4-8 and 2-7 in B1G play. Overall, Illinois is 9-27 under Smith.