Auburn, Malzahn to talk new contract after season

AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs will discuss a new contract — which will probably come with a raise — for coach Gus Malzahn after the season.

The third-ranked Tigers (11-1) will face No. 5 Missouri Saturday in the Southeastern Conference championship game and still have a shot at playing for the national title. They were 3-9 last season.

“All Gus is thinking about is Missouri,” Jacobs said Tuesday. “When the season’s over, he and I will sit down and talk about things and certainly we want Gus to be here at Auburn as long as he wants to be. It’s been phenomenal what he’s done this year, and we certainly want to make sure that he’s adequately compensated for similar coaches in the Southeastern Conference.

“We’ll begin to discuss those things once the season’s over.”

Jacobs had a brief conversation with Malzahn’s agent, Jimmy Sexton, a couple of weeks ago.

Auburn gave Malzahn, who has led the biggest turnaround in college football, a five-year deal worth $2.3 million annually after his hiring in December 2012.

Alabama’s Nick Saban currently makes $5.6 million a year and LSU pays Les Miles $4.3 million annually.

Jacobs didn’t mention any specific coaches as comparisons for the kind of deal Auburn would offer Malzahn.

“You look at what they’ve accomplished,” he said. “There’s certain ones that are what you would call outliers, those that have won national championships and those who haven’t. Right now I think he’s in the lower quartile of the SEC coaches, and based on what he’s doing, he doesn’t need to be there.

“We’ll compare all those and see what we think fits, and make sure he’s the head coach here as long as he wants to be.”

Jacobs said Malzahn “isn’t interested in talking about those things right now” but when he is, the AD suggested the talks should go smoothly.

“The President (Jay Gogue) and the board, and everybody else,” Jacobs said, “want to make sure we do right by Gus and also do right by Auburn.”

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