USF gives Leavitt contract extension through 2012


Published: Thursday, December 1, 2005 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, December 1, 2005 at 12:00 a.m.
TAMPA - South Florida coach Jim Leavitt ended speculation that the Bulls' success in their first season in the Big East might land him another job when he agreed Wednesday to a contract extension through 2012.
Leavitt is the only coach in the school's 10-year football history. The Bulls will take a 6-4 record into Saturday night's regular season finale against No. 12 West Virginia, a game that would have decided the conference title if USF had won at Connecticut last week.
The new deal replaces one that ran through 2009 and will pay Leavitt an average of $1 million per season in base salary and compensation for radio, television and appearances. He will earn $600,000 in 2006.
In addition, the contract includes a $75,000 incentive for a BCS bowl appearance.
The terms also include buyout provisions - $500,000 if Leavitt resigns between Jan. 1, 2006 and Jan. 1, 2008 and $400,000 between Jan. 1, 2008 and Jan. 1, 2012. There is no buyout in the final year of the contract.
"He has made our program competitive in the Big East Conference and within the BCS, and we feel like the terms of this extension are consistent with his outstanding achievements," athletic director Doug Woolard said.
Until last Saturday's 15-10 loss to Connecticut, the Bulls had a chance to finish with at least a tie for the Big East title and represent the conference in the BCS. They are still hopeful of receiving the school's first invitation to a bowl game.
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