CLEMSON -- Clemson announced raises totaling $1.3 million for its football staff Tuesday, raising the staff's compensation by 52 percent from $2.67 million last year to $4 million for 2010.
The increases are the cost of success and keeping a staff intact in the world of major college football.
Clemson athletic director Terry Don Phillips said the salary increases place the Tigers "well within" the upper tier of compensation for ACC football coaches.
"During the offseason a number of our coaches were pursued by prominent programs in other conferences," Phillips said in a release. "We feel it is important to have continuity within the staff.
"When Clemson won three straight ACC championships from 1986-88, we had the same coaching staff all three years. When Florida State was among the top programs in the nation in the 1990s, it had consistency within its staff."
Dabo Swinney's incentive-heavy contract paid off as he met the thresholds for a $900,000 raise, leading the Tigers to their first Atlantic Division title. Swinney's base salary increased to $1.75 million and he also received a one-year extension, extending his term to five years.
Swinney's first contract as head coach, which he signed last year, called for him to receive a base salary of the average of all ACC head coaches if he led the Tigers to a division title.
As reported earlier this year in The Post and Courier, defensive coordinator Kevin Steele received a $200,000 raise to push his salary to $575,000 in his new four-year contract. Steele was offered the defensive coordinator position at Tennessee, but elected to stay at Clemson with an enhanced contract.
The rest of the staff received two-year contracts.
Defensive backs coach Charlie Harbison, who was contacted by Florida last month, received a $75,000 raise to $325,000 per season.
Offensive coordinator Billy Napier, who emerged as an intriguing young coaching talent in his first year as coordinator last year, also earned a $75,000 raise, pushing his base to $275,000. If the offensive continues to make gains without C.J. Spiller in 2010, Napier might be in line for a much more substantial raise.
Defensive line coach Dan Brooks, also contacted by Tennessee over the offseason, received a $50,000 bump to push his salary to $210,000. Jeff Scott ($130,000), Danny Pearman ($210,000) and Chris Rumph ($180,000) received $20,000 increases. Brad Scott received a $15,000 bonus ($220,000).
Clemson's compensation committee approved the contracts Monday.
"I am very appreciative of the support we have received from our administration," Swinney said. "We have created an environment where we can attract outstanding coaches to Clemson University and keep them here. It is important in our ability to remain competitive and challenge for championships as we go forward. These contracts give our staff security."