How Clemson saved $1 million in coaches' bonuses

Matt Fortuna
Clemson bet on itself entering 2016, and it saved the athletic department in a big way. (Getty)
Clemson bet on itself entering 2016, and it saved the athletic department in a big way. (Getty)

Maybe it’s bold. Or maybe it’s just smart business.

When you’re the defending national runner-up, and among a small batch of schools favored to win it all the following year, perhaps you should cover your bases.

Clemson ended up doing that in 2016, and it paid off in a big way.

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We’re talking, of course, about bonus insurance.

According to The Clemson Insider, Clemson invested $272,500 last summer to help with coaches’ bonuses.

Atlanta-based broke Risk Point Consulting ended up cutting the school a check for $1.3 million after the Tigers beat Alabama in January’s national title game — a win that meant plenty of bonuses for Clemson’s staff.

From TCI:

“It was the craziest thing,” (deputy AD Graham) Neff said. “I got it and I went and got Eric (George) and Dan (Radakovich) and said ‘Here it is boys!’ That decision we made in the summer, prior to the season, saved us a million bucks.”

The $1.3 million paid off well considering Clemson’s coaches and staff bonuses increased by $1.15 million from 2015 to 2016, which was due largely to the outcome of the College Football Playoff National Championship Game.

Clemson had a net savings of $1.05 million.

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The Tigers’ staff accumulated $2.26 million in coaches’ bonuses last year, according to TCI. Head coach Dabo Swinney this year will net more than $6.1 million in total salary, which includes a $1.75 million bonus for winning the national title and hitting APR marks.

Neff tells TCI he has spoken to Risk Point Consulting and obtained a few quotes for 2017, although the prices and benchmarks may vary depending on the team’s expectations each season. (For example, Clemson could insure an ACC title as opposed to a national title, and so forth.)

In any event, the school cashed in nicely this past season after betting on itself.

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Matt Fortuna is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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