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How much is Colorado paying Deion Sanders? Coach Prime’s contract details with the Buffaloes

Deion Sanders, also known as Coach Prime, resigned from Jackson State to join Colorado. His previous base salary at Jackson State was $300,000 per year.

Head coach Deion Sanders of the Colorado Buffaloes

Deion Sanders, also known as Coach Prime, has left his coaching role at Jackson State University for the appeal of Colorado. This move significantly changed his coaching career and came with a substantial financial transformation.

Coach Prime’s annual base salary at Jackson State was $300,000, a respectable figure. However, the opportunity to coach in the Pac-12 and the appeal of the Rockies proved too tempting to resist. He decided to join the University of Colorado, where his annual salary jumped to an astonishing $5.5 million.

This increase in salary highlights the tremendous faith that Colorado football has in his leadership as they seek to build a successful future in the competitive Pac-12 conference.

The Lucrative Contract

Deion Sanders’ new contract with the University of Colorado is a financial blockbuster. Spanning five years, this deal is valued at a staggering $29.5 million, and this is merely the starting point. The contract teems with potential bonuses and incentives that could boost his earnings.

Notably, after the third year of this agreement, there’s a provision for renegotiation. Either party can propose adjustments to various aspects of the contract, including salary, benefits, and other crucial details. This dynamic clause demonstrates the commitment of both Coach Prime and the university to ensuring a mutually beneficial partnership.

Compensation Structure

Deion Sanders’ compensation comprises various components that add up to $5.5 million annually, knowing that the highest-paid head coach in college football is Nick Saban of Alabama ($10.96 million). His base pay is $500,000; the rest is tied to other responsibilities.

A significant part of his earnings is also linked to media obligations, which reflects the importance of sports personalities like him in the media industry. Additionally, promotional activities and student-athlete development are crucial aspects of his role and contribute significantly to his overall earnings. The value of Coach Prime’s contract increases each year he remains at the helm of Colorado Football. This means the warranty will reach a maximum of $6.3 million for the 2027 season.


Coach Prime could earn a $450,000 bonus if the Buffaloes make one of the bowl games. Winning a national championship could raise the reward to $750,000, reflecting the team’s lofty goals.

Other obtainable incentives include:

  • $150,000 for the achievement of securing six victories in a single season, ensuring bowl eligibility.
  • An additional $100,000 for every win beyond the initial six.
  • A $150,000 bonus if Colorado wins in the fiercely competitive Pac-12.
  • An enticing $75,000 for participating in a Pac-12 Championship game.
  • The prospect of national recognition, with a $150,000 bonus if he earns the title of National Coach of the Year.
  • A $75,000 bonus reserved for the Pac-12 Coach of the Year accolade.
  • The academic prowess of the team is not forgotten, with $50,000 bonuses for each instance in which Colorado attains a team APR (Academic Progress Rate) of at least 965.

Buyout Clauses

If the University of Colorado terminates Sanders’ contract without any valid reason, they would be liable to pay him 75% of the remaining contract. On the other hand, if Sanders chooses to terminate the contractual relationship, he is liable to pay the university $15 million if he leaves in the first year, $10 million if he goes in the second year, $8 million in the third year, and $5 million if he leaves after that.