Stu Jackson (TheHoosier.com)
Figuring out what to pay a first-year head coach is an imperfect science. There's really no right or wrong way to do it.
So when it came to Tom Allen's contract, IU took a "go out and earn it" approach. According to the Indystar, Allen's contract that will take him through 2022 guarantees $1.795 million annually. That's made up a of a $500,000 per-year base pay and an additional $1.295 million per year from additional income stream.
That total is already well above the $500,000 Allen made in his first and only season under Kevin Wilson as IU's defensive coordinator. The kicker is that Allen could elevate that paycheck to nearly $3 million if he meets additional criteria in what is a heavily incentivized contract.
Think of it almost like commission.
A six-win season, which IU has done each of the last two years, will net Allen $100,000. Each win after that will add another $100,000 to the pot, meaning a six-win season would bring Allen's total to $1.895 million, a seven-win season would make it a $1.995 million check and an eight-win season would bring it to $2.005 million and so on.
If the Hoosiers are to run the table and go undefeated next season, Allen would earn $900,000 in win bonuses on that structure alone. Now, Allen shouldn't be planning on that type of money, but it's out there.
Along the way Allen's contract will give out additional money for awards like being named the Big Ten's Coach of the Year of qualifying for the Big Ten championship. There's also cash built in for academic success to try and ensure student athletes are indeed paying attention to the academic side of their time at IU.
If Allen's guaranteed money was to be compared to last year's data compiled by USA Today, his contract would be the 62nd most lucrative deal in the nation. That's a dozen spots lower than Wilson's contract that netted him $2.32 million, according to USA Today's database.
Every coach gets bonuses built into their contract. That's nothing new.
But when it comes to Allen's first head coaching contract, the nature of the deal makes things fair for both he and IU. The Hoosiers' administration wasted no time proving how much they trust Allen when they publicly announced his hire during the same press conference they announced Wilson's exit, but there's still going to be variables of unknown surrounding just how well Allen will adapt to his new job.
The contract in place assures IU won't get burned if things begin to go south, paying him adequately relative to the going national rate. But it also gives Allen the reassurance that if he wins, he'll be rewarded.
What it comes down to is this: More wins mean more happy Hoosier fans...And more money in Allen's wallet.
• Subscribe to our podcast on iTunes
• Follow us on Twitter: @IndianaRivals
• Like us on Facebook.