Kevin Wilson's future, along with Indiana's institutional commitment to football, has often been questioned in recent seasons. Those questions won't be asked much longer.
Indiana just announced Kevin Wilson has been signed to a new deal which will run through the 2021 season at an annual cost of $2.55 million per year. While that price point still lags behind some major programs in the Big Ten, it nearly doubles Wilson's previous salary of $1.3 million per year -- and is a far cry from Bill Lynch's final season in 2010. In that season, Lynch only made $800,000 coaching football at a Power 5 school. Without accounting for any other additional earnings that coaches often receive, Wilson's new deal would have ranked as the 41st most well-compensated coach in college football in 2015, right behind West Virginia's Dana Holgorson and ahead of Miami's now-fired Al Golden. It makes Wilson the 6th highest-paid coach in the Big Ten -- just ahead of new Maryland head coach DJ Durkin.
Despite his 20-41 overall record, Indiana has seen marked progress as a program both on and off the field under Wilson. The comes on the heels of Indiana's first bowl trip since 2007 -- and a wildly entertaining (while heartbreaking) season for players and fans that featured near-misses against the Big Ten's best. Wilson's exciting, up-tempo is translating in the stands, too -- Indiana was just one of a few schools across the nation to see an attendance increase in 2015.
Oh, and Wilson was excited. He #BOOM'd his own contract extension -- an occasion normally reserved for landing new recruits.
#BOOM - It's a Gr8 Day 2 Be a Hoosier #812 - Solid Foundation & Excited as #iufb Moves Forward - #GoIU— Kevin Wilson (@IUCoachWilson) January 11, 2016
The full release is below.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana University Vice President and Director of Athletics Fred Glass announced Monday that head football coach Kevin Wilson has signed a new six-year contract. The agreement runs through the 2021 season and Wilson will earn an average annual compensation of $2.55 million or $15.3 million over six years. No other coach in the Big Ten has more seasons on his contract and only one (Jim Harbaugh) has as many.
Wilson led the Hoosiers to the 2015 New Era Pinstripe Bowl, only their second bowl appearance in the last 22 years and their first postseason appearance since 2007. IU's six victories marked the program's highest total since the same season. Indiana won the Old Oaken Bucket for the third straight campaign for the first time since 1944-47. A five-year program record 111 Hoosiers have secured Academic All-Big Ten honors under Wilson's direction.
"This contract reflects our commitment to Kevin, to continuity, and to Indiana University Football," said Glass. "Kevin has done a great job building our program into one that is competitive with the great teams of the Big Ten and the nation. We are confident that he will continue to lead us to sustained success on the field and in the classroom."
"Thank you to President McRobbie, the Board of Trustees, Mr. Glass and the entire athletics administration for their support," Wilson said. "Coupled with an already solid foundation, this ensures stability as we continue to build a winning program in the Big Ten East, one of the great divisions in college football. The administration has shown a total commitment to our program development, continuity, staffing, recruiting and facilities, and has invested heavily in the development of and experience for our students. We are excited for the opportunity and embrace the challenge ahead. My family and I love Indiana and we are all proud Hoosiers. Go IU!"
Wilson has mentored three first team All-Americans in his five seasons - offensive linemen Dan Feeneyand Jason Spriggs in 2015, and Tevin Coleman in 2014. The three All-Americans are the most for Indiana over a two-year period since 1968-69 (3).
Sixteen IU standouts have either moved on to the NFL or received camp invites, including four in 2015. Wide receiver Cody Latimer was selected 56th overall by the Denver Broncos in 2014 and running back Tevin Coleman was selected 73rd overall by the Atlanta Falcons in 2015.
Thirty-eight Hoosiers have earned All-Big Ten honors, highlighted by a school record 12 this year. Nine players have collected freshman All-America honors and 24 have garnered freshman All-Big Ten recognition.
Wilson's offenses have set 47 school records, including single-season points, total yardage, passing yardage and rushing yardage. Indiana led the Big Ten in total offense, scoring offense and passing offense, the first team since Ohio State in 1995 to do so.
IU (2015) became the fourth team in FBS history with a 3,500-yard passer, two 1,000-yard rushers and one 1,000-yard receiver in the same season, joining 2005 Southern California, 2008 Oklahoma and 2015 Southern Miss. The Hoosiers had two 1,000-yard rushers for the first time in program history and were one of two Power Five teams (Baylor) to accomplish that feat this season.
Indiana won its final two games for the first time since 2001, its final two road games for the first time since 1982 and its final two games with both being on the road for the first time since 1946. IU had not won back-to-back Big Ten games since 2012, two Big Ten road games in the same year since 2001, back-to-back Big Ten road games since 1993 and three road games in a single season since 1994.
Adam Replogle (2012) and safety Mark Murphy (2013, 2014) were the eighth and ninth Indiana players to collect Academic All-America honors. Murphy became just the third Hoosier to earn the honor twice.
IU opens the 2016 campaign at Florida International on Saturday, Sept. 3, and kicks off its home slate against Ball State on Saturday, Sept. 10.