Greg Schiano was set to be an extremely rich man before his deal to become the head coach at Tennessee fell through due to fan outrage. Schiano and ex-Vols athletic director John Currie had signed a memorandum of understanding on a contract that would have paid Schiano $27 million over six years. That’s an average $4.5 million per year for a coach no one else wanted.
A public records request yielded the memorandum of understanding, which Tennessee officials believe isn’t legally binding because it was never signed by the school’s chief financial officer. There will surely be a legal battle coming, as Schiano’s lawyers will no doubt attempt to extract some of that cash.
To give you an idea how much $4.5 million a year is, consider that at the time he agreed to the deal, Only Nick Saban and Gus Malzahn made more among SEC coaches. That has since changed with Jimbo Fisher and Dan Mullen’s new contracts.
So Tennessee was going to pay Schiano — a guy no one else was hot after — a top-level salary to coach its football team. That is absolutely insane and it’s no wonder Currie got fired for how he handled the coaching search.
Schiano was 68-67 in 11 seasons at Rutgers, then was a dismal 11-21 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. When you throw in his potential transgressions at Penn State it truly makes you wonder what on Earth Currie was thinking.