As of the numbers from USA Today on March 9, 2021, newly hired Texas basketball head coach Chris Beard sits among the five highest-paid at his position in the entire country. At the time back on March 9, Beard was still the head coach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders, getting paid just shy of $5 million for the year.
The total pay for Beard for the last year was listed at just north of $4.7 million after the deductions of COVID-19 pandemic from the school. Beard was set to get just over $5 million this year from Texas Tech if not for the pandemic deduction.
Beard actually had the most sizable pandemic reduction of any head coach that had that figure listed in the entire country last year, at just north of $500K. Last but not least, Beard held one of the 10 largest contract buyout figures at just north of $15 million.
Texas is going to be paying Beard a lot more than they did their former sixth-year head coach Shaka Smart. Beard was the fourth highest-paid college hoops head coach in the country within the last year, while Smart was the 25th after COVID-19 pandemic reductions at $3.06 million.
What Chris Beard will be getting paid with Texas basketball?
Beard will be due to make around $5 million annually in his base salary from the new contract he signed with Texas when he was hired back on April 1. He is due a total of around $35 million over the course of seven years, with other incentives that could add a lot of money onto those figures.
With that amount, Beard could work his way into the top three highest-paid head coaches in the country next year. The top three on the list (in order from bottom to top) were Villanova Wildcats head coach Jay Wright ($6.14 million), Duke Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski ($7.04 million), and Kentucky Wildcats head coach John Calipari ($8.1 million). Those figures were total pay for college hoops head coaches, not base salary.
The scheduled pay for base salary and COVID-19 pandemic reduction figures for Coach K and Wright were not present on the list for USA Today. And two years ago, the UCLA Bruins reportedly (per NBC Sports) offered to double the salary of Wright before they wound up hiring former Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Mick Cronin to assume the reigns with their program.
Texas is putting itself among some major college hoops programs with the hiring of Beard. He’s not going to make double the amount that Smart did in total pay off the bat, but he could come close depending on how his incentives play out.
Texas finished up with a record of 19-8 (11-6 Big 12) under the direction of Smart following their early exit in March Madness by way of a Round of 64 upset at the hands of the 14-seed Abilene Christian. Smart left Austin back on March 26 to take the head coaching job with the Marquette Golden Eagles.