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USF’s Charlie Strong set to make $5 million this season

The beleaguered Bulls coach is due a $2.5 million retention bonus in 2019.
USF coach Charlie Strong talks with quarterback Jordan McCloud during the first half against Connecticut earlier this month.
USF coach Charlie Strong talks with quarterback Jordan McCloud during the first half against Connecticut earlier this month. [ MICHAEL DWYER | AP ]
Published Oct. 22, 2019|Updated Oct. 22, 2019

TAMPA ― Thanks to a Year 3 bonus in his contract, USF’s Charlie Strong, whose 3-4 team appears to be a bowl long shot, will be the highest-paid Group of Five coach in 2019.

Strong will earn $5 million this season alone, making him the 16th-highest-paid coach in all of Division I-A according to the annual coaches-salary database released Tuesday by USA Today. His strength coach, Pat Moorer, earns $300,000 this year, also the Group of Five’s highest for that position.

Strong’s total includes a $2.5 million salary and a $2.5 million retention bonus payable in Year 3.

Former Bulls athletic director Mark Harlan confirmed the retention bonus upon Strong’s hiring, saying the money would come from athletic department-generated funds in an agreement with the USF Foundation, a school fundraising arm.

On Tuesday morning, the school confirmed that bonus remains intact.

MORE BULLS: Saddled with rookie quarterbacks, Charlie Strong challenges USF receivers

Strong led USF to a 10-2 record his first season, but the program is 10-10 since then, having lost 10 of its last 13 games. His five-year deal calls for him to make a $2.6 million salary in Year Four, and $2.7 in the final year.

In July, he purchased a $3.2 million home in South Tampa.

Terms of his buyout arrangement with the USF Foundation, a direct-support organization, are confidential and exempt from disclosure under Florida law.

Contact Joey Knight at jknight@tampabay.com. Follow @TBTimes_Bulls

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