South Carolina Football: Where does Shane Beamer’s salary rank nationally?

South Carolina football coach Shane Beamer. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
South Carolina football coach Shane Beamer. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /

South Carolina football coach Shane Beamer was given one of the largest raises in the country this past offseason. The Gamecock headman was among the lowest-paid head coaches in major college football prior to the near-$4 Million raise he received after the Gamecocks knocked off Tennessee and Clemson to end the 2022 regular season.

The raise brought Beamer’s annual salary to just over $6 Million and came with an extension that guaranteed his contract through 2027. The “starting” salary for 2023 sat at about $6.125 Million, and each subsequent season would see him receive a small raise until he reaches the $6.5 Million mark in 2026.

If he were to be terminated prior to the contract expiring, Beamer’s buyout ensures that he would receive 65% of his remaining contract value. If Beamer left the school during that time, he (or a new school) would owe the University of South Carolina a substantial chunk of change, as well.

But where does the South Carolina football rank in relation to other coaches in the SEC and around the country? Not as highly as one might think.

According to USAToday, Beamer’s annual salary ranks 11th in the SEC (12th if one counts Oklahoma’s Brent Venables, who will be an SEC head coach in 2024). That number is 24th in the country.

Only Mississippi State’s Zach Arnett (58th at $3 Million), Vanderbilt’s Clark Lea (56th at $3.05 Million), and Missouri’s Eli Drinkwitz (25th at $6 Million) make less than Beamer in the SEC. Future conference member Texas pays head coach Steve Sarkisian $5.6 Million a year, making him the 30th-highest paid coach in America.

Clemson’s Dabo Swinney makes about $4.5 Million more annually than Beamer with a $10.88 Million check coming to his bank account every year. That amount makes him the 2nd-highest paid coach in the land, trailing only Alabama’s Nick Saban who makes $11.4 Million per season.

It is important to note that private schools are not required to share their coach’s salaries. Some of this data is, therefore, not 100% confirmable for certain coaches. Two of these coaches (Southern Cal’s Lincoln Riley and Miami’s Mario Cristobal) are known to make more than Beamer, but the exact figures were not discovered by USAToday’s research.

Head-to-head last season, Beamer beat four of the coaches ahead of him on the list. Clemson’s Dabo Swinney, Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher, Tennessee’s Josh Heupel, and Kentucky’s Mark Stoops all fell to the South Carolina football program in 2022.

One coach ahead of Beamer on the annual salary list (Michigan State’s Mel Tucker) has been fired amidst an investigation into sexual harassment in the workplace. Several other coaches ahead of him on the list are on the “hot seat.”

These numbers will change next season as coaches are fired, hired elsewhere, retire, or get raises.

Related Story. South Carolina Football announces kick time, sellout vs. Florida. light