Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops has been given a two-year extension on his contract that will now last until 2022.
Mark Stoops led the Kentucky Wildcats to a 7-6 record in 2016, making a bowl game for the first time since 2010 and pulling an upset against rival Louisville and Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson. That, along with the momentum he has seemingly built in Lexington, has earned him a two-year contract extension, putting him as the head coach through 2022.
This is the second time that the Kentucky athletic department has extended Stoops’ contract, with the first being in 2014 after a 2-10 season in his first season in charge in Lexington. While that deal sort of came out of the blue, this newest extension makes sense given that the Wildcats appear to be on solid ground under Stoops.
“I want to thank Dr. (Eli) Capilouto, Mitch Barnhart and the Board of Trustees for their continued support,” Stoops said in the statement. “When we came here, doing a rebuild in a challenging situation, I said that full support from everyone involved was imperative and we have always received that. We needed great commitment, we’ve had great commitment and we’re continuing to get great commitment.”
Stoops was paid $3.5 million for the 2016 season, and his salary will rise each year of the remaining deal by $250,000. An amendment in the contract also will give Stoops an extra year on the contract if the Wildcats were to win between seven and nine games in a season, while a ten-plus win season would extended it for two years.
“The last four years have been a grind for Mark and his staff, but he has never wavered in his commitment to building Kentucky football into a consistent winner,” Kentucky athletic director Mitch Barnhart said in a prepared statement.