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Read the amended contract: UC board OKs extension for Bearcats football coach Luke Fickell

The University of Cincinnati made it official on Tuesday.

UC's board of trustees unanimously approved a new contract extension for Luke Fickell that will pay the 48-year-old football coach $5 million per year through 2028.

University sources told The Enquirer on Feb. 14 that Fickell and UC had agreed to the new extension, which includes a $1.6 million annual salary increase.

The Enquirer received the amended contract through an open records request on Tuesday. It includes bonuses between $25,000 and $250,000 for coaching achievements such as bowl appearances, national championship wins, regular-season wins and being recognized as conference coach of the year. The yearly cap for performance bonus compensation Fickell may receive is $775,000, the contract states. Scroll to the end of this story or click here to see the full contract.

More: UC Bearcats coach Luke Fickell agrees to extension for $5 million per year through 2028

“Completing a contract extension for Coach Fickell was a top priority for our athletic department and university, and shows our commitment to growing this football program and taking it to the next level,” UC director of athletics John Cunningham said.

When recommending Fickell’s contract extension to the board, Cunningham spoke of Fickell’s leadership, integrity and coaching ability and his importance to UC and the athletic department.

John Cunningham, University of Cincinnati athletic director, looks on before the NCAA football game between the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Ind.
John Cunningham, University of Cincinnati athletic director, looks on before the NCAA football game between the Cincinnati Bearcats and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend, Ind.

“We believe we have the best coach in the country and certainly the best leader for our Cincinnati football program," he said. "He has proven that day in and day out by building a culture that consistently wins and breaks records, but most importantly develops men of great character, setting them up to succeed in life. I can’t thank President Neville Pinto enough for his leadership and work on getting this contract completed."

Fickell, who led the Bearcats to a 13-1 season, a second straight American Athletic Conference championship and a spot in the College Football Playoff in 2021, said he's "truly honored" to stay at the helm of the UC football program.

Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Luke Fickell raises the trophy of the American Athletic Conference championship football game, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021, at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bearcats defeated the Houston Cougars, 35-20.
Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Luke Fickell raises the trophy of the American Athletic Conference championship football game, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021, at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bearcats defeated the Houston Cougars, 35-20.

“I appreciate the support of the leadership at the University of Cincinnati, including Director of Athletics John Cunningham and (UC) President Neville Pinto, as well as the Board of Trustees, our fans and our whole university and Cincinnati community,” Fickell said. “John and President Pinto share my vision for how we want to grow this program and take it to the next level, and that’s by investing in people - not just the head coach - and providing the necessary resources to prepare student-athletes to be at their best on and off the field."

University of Cincinnati President Neville Pinto and Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Luke Fickell embrace shortly before the trophy presentation of the American Athletic Conference championship football game, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021, at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bearcats defeated the Houston Cougars, 35-20.
University of Cincinnati President Neville Pinto and Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Luke Fickell embrace shortly before the trophy presentation of the American Athletic Conference championship football game, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2021, at Nippert Stadium in Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Bearcats defeated the Houston Cougars, 35-20.

The new deal, which replaces Fickell's previous extension approved by the board in August 2020, features a $5.2 million annual salary pool for Fickell's staff. The previous extension included a pool of $3.85 million.

Fickell also requested an updated indoor practice facility as part of the extension, Cunningham said.

The amended contract also includes 20 complimentary season tickets, complimentary use of a Nippert Stadium suite, 14 complimentary tickets to all postseason football games and four garage parking passes for Fickell's personal use. He will also receive eight complimentary season tickets and eight postseason game tickets for UC men's basketball.

Cincinnati is 48-15 in five seasons under Fickell. The former standout Ohio State defensive lineman and longtime Buckeyes assistant was hired as the 42nd head coach in UC program history in December 2016.

Cincinnati is scheduled to become a member of the Big 12 Conference no earlier than July 1, 2024.

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This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: University of Cincinnati board approves extension for Luke Fickell