Ohio State’s loss nets Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh $500,000 and a shot at more

For the second year in a row, Michigan soccer coach Jim Harbaugh’s list of earned incentive bonuses begins with a $500,000 payment for winning the Big Ten Conference East Division title — a goal again marked by a win over archrivals Ohio State was reached.

Saturday’s win, Michigan’s first in Columbus since 2000, gives Harbaugh a chance to repeat his 2021-22 bonus bonanza of more than $2.2 million. Most of that would come if the Wolverines won a second straight Big Ten championship next weekend. This title gives Harbaugh a $1 million bonus. Since it would also take Michigan to the semifinals of the College Football Playoffs, Harbaugh’s separate bowl appearance bonus would be $500,000.

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh warms up before his team's game against Ohio State at Ohio Stadium.

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh warms up before his team’s game against Ohio State at Ohio Stadium.

In terms of one-off bonuses available this season, Harbaugh’s bonus structure is the second most lucrative for a head coach at Bowl Subdivision Public School, according to USA TODAY Sports’ annual survey of football coach salaries. He could end up with $3.275 million. (Former Arizona State coach Herm Edwards, who left the school in September, started the season with a maximum bonus of just under $5.6 million. Other head coaches may receive automatic contract renewals, which have greater overall value to the coaches .)

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Harbaugh’s bonus structure has its origins in the deal he and Michigan negotiated ahead of the 2021 season — a deal also included Harbaugh’s annual base salary being cut by $4.05 million. As part of this agreement, Harbaugh’s incentives were increased dramatically, from the $125,000 he could receive if the Wolverines played in the Big Ten title game and the additional $125,000 he could receive if they won it.

After Michigan’s success last season, the parties renegotiated again. Harbaugh’s base salary for the 2022 season was restored to $8.05 million, but the enhanced bonus package was retained.

Last year, two days after Michigan beat Ohio State to win the Big Ten East, Harbaugh announced that all bonus money owed to him for the football team’s success in the 2021 season would be diverted to members of the department , who had suffered pandemic-related pay cuts during an 11-month span of 2020 and 2021 and had remained on the payroll.

In the end, 210 employees received a little over $1.5 million in total, according to information obtained by USA TODAY Sports from the university as part of an Open Records request.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Michigan Coach Jim Harbaugh Earns $500,000 Bonus For Winning Ohio State