Liberty and Hugh Freeze have executed a new multi-year contract, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell, Jr. announced on twitter today. Brett McMurphy reports it is a new 5-year deal “competitive salary-wise with the top paid Group of 5 coaches.”
This new 5-year deal, adds an additional season onto the original 5-year contract Freeze signed with Liberty in December 2018 as it runs through the 2024 season.
ESPN is reporting this new 5-year contract will pay Freeze an average of $2 million per year and that the deal also includes “a lucrative incentive package based on win totals.”
According to the USA Today. a $2 million base salary would have made Freeze the 8th highest paid coach among the Group of 5 coaches, putting him behind South Florida’s Charlie Strong, Houston’s Dana Holgorsen, Memphis’ Mike Norvell, Navy’s Ken Niumatalolo, Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell, UCF’s Josh Heupel, and Wyoming’s Craig Bohl. Strong has since been fired while Norvell has taken over as Florida State’s head coach.
In his first year at Liberty, Freeze led the Flames to a 7-5 record and a spot in the Cure Bowl, the first bowl game in program history. Freeze has also worked wonders on the recruiting trail as he continues to build the Liberty football program into one of the best in the Group of Five, as he has stated is his goal.
As a private institution, Liberty is not required to disclose Freeze’s current salary. Prior to his retirement last December, previous Liberty head coach Turner Gill was reportedly making an annual salary of $947,281. It is expected that Freeze is making more than that from his original 5-year contract signed last year.
Freeze had been mentioned as a possible replacement at several Power Five openings including Florida State, Arkansas, and Missouri.