PULLMAN — Washington State athletic director Bill Moos hired veteran coach Ernie Kent to revive the men’s basketball program at WSU. Judging from the long list of aim-for-the-sky bonuses built into Kent’s contract, Moos is more than willing to pay Kent handsomely to get the job done.
In addition to annual base compensation of $1.4 million – the highest salary for a basketball coach in WSU history – Kent would haul in $150,000 for a national championship. A regular-season or tournament championship in the Pac-12 Conference would be worth $50,000.
Details of Kent’s contract, which he signed last month, were made public Tuesday. Lorenzo Romar, his counterpart at Washington, has an annual base salary of $1.7 million, not including similar bonuses, for a contract that extends through 2020.
An NCAA tournament berth earns Kent $20,000. Each of WSU’s first three victories in the tournament (through the Elite Eight) would tack on $10,000 more to the original $20,000 bonus. The Final Four is good for $75,000. Losing in the title game would make Kent $100,000 richer.
WSU has not won a conference championship in men’s basketball since 1940-41. That was the only season the Cougars played in the Final Four. The NCAA tournament consisted of just eight teams that year.
Kent makes $10,000 for guiding the Cougars to the National Invitation Tournament and $50,000 for winning it. Second place in the Pac-12 results in a $45,000 bonus. Third place, $35,000. Fourth place, $20,000. Fifth place, $10,000. Sixth place, $5,000.
Kent cashes in $50,000 if he’s national coach of the year, and $25,000 if he’s voted the top Pac-12 coach. Kent’s five-year contract can be extended one year every year if the Cougars so choose.
Kent must pay the school $2 million if he opts out of his contract prior to June 30, 2016; $1.5 million prior to June 30, 2017, and $1 million any year thereafter.
New assistant men’s basketball coaches Greg Graham and Silvey Dominguez make $200,000 and $190,000 a year, respectively. Curtis Allen, the lone holdover from Ken Bone’s coaching staff, earns $120,000. Allen is less experienced than Graham and Dominguez.
Scott Thom, the new men’s basketball strength and conditioning coach, earns $75,000. Mike Simonson, entering his third year as director of basketball operations, makes $50,000.
Salaries for assistant football coaches Eric Russell ($251,500) and David Yost ($241,500) were released Tuesday. Other football salaries that had not been released earlier include those for head strength and conditioning coach Jason Loscalzo ($226,500), director of operations Antonio Huffman ($106,500) and offensive analyst Graham Harrell ($50,000).
June Daugherty, the head women’s basketball coach, had her contract extended through 2018-19 last spring. Her annual base compensation, which was not released when the extension was announced, is $308,000.