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Three Ohio State assistants top $500,000 in salary

The SportsXchange

Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith told the Columbus Dispatch on Sunday that three of head coach Urban Meyer's assistants received salaries that topped $500,000 in 2012.

Defensive coordinator Luke Fickell, co-defensive coordinator Everett Withers and offensive coordinator Tom Herman each make more than half a million dollars annually.

Fickell's pay actually decreased to $600,000 from when he coached the team after Jim Tressel's resignation in 2011.

Withers and Herman each got pay raises of $130,000 and now earn $580,000 and $550,000, respectively.

Smith said the reason for the high salaries was in response to Michigan defensive coordinator Greg Mattison getting a $750,000 salary. Other conferences, including the Pac-12 and SEC, are also giving assistant coaches similar pay.

"It wasn't because, 'We're competing with Alabama,' " Smith said. "That wasn't the idea. I had to bite the bullet (after Mattison). We didn't have anybody near that level, and the Pac-12 started doing the same thing. The reality is, as that changed, we had to change with it."

Clemson offensive coordinator Chad Morris leads assistant coaches in the nation with a $1.3 million salary.

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