It took a lot to lure Kim Mulkey from Baylor. Boardroom dives into how much the Hall of Famer is making at LSU.
UPDATE 9/7/23: Kim Mulkey has reportedly agreed to a new 10 year, $32 million contract with the Tigers on the heels of their 2023 national championship. The deal is pending approval from the university’s board of supervisors before it can be officially signed. Boardroom will further update the story when the contract is made publicly available.
Say what you will about Kim Mulkey — and you can say plenty — but she’s one of the best in the game. The LSU Tigers head coach is closing in on 700 career wins, has four national championships as a coach to her name, has been to five Final Fours, and was a 2020 Hall of Fame inductee.
You don’t often see coaches with her pedigree changing jobs, but that’s exactly what she did prior to the 2021-22 season, leaving the Baylor Bears to coach LSU, located less than an hour’s drive from her hometown of Hammond, LA. To no one’s surprise, Mulkey had an immediate impact. She turned a nine-win team from the year before into a 26-6 club in 2022, taking the Tigers to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2017. This year, LSU did even better, finishing second in the SEC behind only undefeated South Carolina and earning a 3 seed.
2023 marks the first time since 2014 that LSU has reached the second weekend of the tournament, and the Tigers have realistic Final Four aspirations. But this is college sports. Results like this cost money, and that’s what LSU had to shell out to bring Mulkey home. Boardroom dives into the Kim Mulkey contract at LSU.
Kim Mulkey Contract & Salary Breakdown at LSU
Signed: Sept. 24, 2021
Term: Through 2029 season
Base Salary: $400,000
Kim Mulkey Supplemental Compensation
In addition to her base salary, LSU pays Mulkey through three areas: media participation, personal travel allowance, and sponsor-related compensation. The latter two are single, annual payments that stay consistent throughout the life of her deal. Each January, she receives an $80,000 travel allowance, and in July, an additional $60,000 for sponsor-related compensation. She makes the bulk of her money, however, through her media participation pay, set at the below annual rates and payable each month in equal installments:
- 7/1/22-6/30/23: $2,139,625
- 7/1/23-6/30/24: $2,214,625
- 7/1/24-6/30/25: $2,319,625
- 7/1/25-6/30/26: $2,364,625
- 7/1/26-6/30/27: $2,666,625
- 7/1/27-6/30/28: $2,746,625
- 7/1/28-6/30/29: $2,921,625
All told, this means for the 2022-23 season, Mulkey will make $2,679,625 before bonuses — and don’t worry, she’s already earned some. Over the remaining life of her deal, Mulkey is set to make $21,153,375 if she sticks it out.
Kim Mulkey Contract Bonuses
Mulkey’s contract allows for her to receive thousands in bonuses each year for her and her team’s achievements. Her incentives are broken into three categories: postseason incentives, coaching recognition, and academic incentives.
- SEC Regular Season champion: $65,000 AND
- SEC Tournament champion: $35,000
- NCAA Tournament appearance: $28,000 AND
- Round of 32 appearance: $30,000 AND
- Sweet 16: $33,000 AND
- Elite Eight: $38,000 AND
- Final Four: $50,000 AND
- Championship game: $75,000 AND
- National Championship: $150,000
In addition, Mulkey will receive a $5,000 sponsor-related incentive if the team reaches the Sweet 16. That increases to $15,000 if the Tigers go to the Final Four and $30,000 if they play in the title game.
Final AP Poll
- If LSU finishes the season ranked 1-10: $30,000 OR
- If LSU finishes 11-25: $25,000
Mulkey can earn the following for winning coach of the year awards:
- SEC Coach of the Year: $10,000 AND
- National Coach of the Year: $15,000
Academic Incentive Compensation
LSU will award Mulkey bonuses based on where her players finish in the NCAA’s APR, as it relates to other Division I schools.
- Multi-year APR Top 10 percentile: $13,000
- Multi-year APR 11-40 percentile: $9,000
Altogether, this means that if LSU hits its ceiling, winning a national championship, SEC championships, finishing atop the AP Poll, with Coach of the Year and academic incentives intact, Mulkey can earn a maximum of $602,000 in annual bonuses.
For the 2022-23 season, we don’t know yet how much Mulkey can make in bonuses, but we do know a little bit. Dawn Staley won SEC Coach of the Year and it’s not likely Mulkey will be national coach of the year, so she won’t receive those bonuses. She does, however, have LSU in the Sweet 16, giving her a minimum bonus of $96,000. You could even add an additional $30,000 to that if you assume the Tigers will finish in the top 10 in the final AP Poll, which they likely will.
Kim Mulkey Buyout Details
Mulkey’s buyout clauses are simple: if her contract is terminated before the end of the deal, $2,000,000 will change hands, as long as she is not fired for cause (think scandal, massive NCAA violation, etc.). If LSU fires her without cause, the university will pay her the $2,000,000. If Mulkey leaves for another job, she will owe the university the same amount.
IN addition to her guaranteed pay and bonus structure, Mulkey is entitled to the following:
- 16 tickets to all LSU women’s basketball home games
- Country club membership
- Monthly automobile allowance of up to $1,000 per month
- Travel privileges for guests to athletic events
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