Rich Rodriguez has an interesting buyout clause in his newest proposed contract as head coach of the Arizona Wildcats
Should Rodriguez leave Tucson for another program after Jan. 15, 2015, his buyout requires him to pay the university $500,000. If Rodriguez wants to return to West Virginia, though, he would have to pay $1 million.
Hmm. Rich Rodriguez's extended contract has a buyout that doubles if he leaves Arizona for WVU after this season. pic.twitter.com/RFRe5um6KC— Mike Casazza (@mikecasazza) May 28, 2014
West Virginia, the school he left on such bad terms that he was seen chuckling about its legal woes years later.
For a coach who just had his base salary upped to $1.5 million annually -- and a guy who has made millions over the last decade -- it's not like the $1 million buyout would be an astronomical hardship for RichRod. It is rather interesting that Arizona decided to put that not-so-minor detail in his latest proposed deal, which will go before the Arizona Board of Regents for approval in June.
Rodriguez's new deal includes a raise that will take him from $1.33 million to $1.5 million in base salary, which will increase by $100,000 every year until 2018. He also receives $500,000 annually for peripheral duties such as TV and radio appearances.
Arizona would be smart to do whatever it can to keep Rodriguez around. The Wildcats won eight games in each of his first two seasons in the desert and are expected to be competitive once again in 2014 thanks to some recent success on the recruiting trail. Rodriguez has also seemed to thrive in a relatively low-pressure situation out in Tucson, especially after the Michigan debacle got the best of him.
As far as Rodriguez heading back to West Virginia goes, there hasn't been anything besides message board chatter on the topic. With Dana Holgorsen on the hot seat this season -- his seat seemingly began to warm up last year -- the rumors are sure to continue in the coming weeks.