CLEMSON — Dabo Swinney will not be over-looking N.C. State (6-4, 3-3 ACC) at 3:30 p.m. Saturday with rival South Carolina next on the schedule as the Clemson coach has a chance – albeit a slim chance – at securing a significant raise.
With an appearance in the ACC title game, Swinney’s contract calls for his total compensation to escalate from $1.965 million per year to the average of the top five compensated ACC coaches, which is $2.39 million, according to USA Today’s salary database.
The raise is a longshot this fall as No. 11 Clemson (9-1, 6-1) needs a win Saturday combined with a Florida State loss at Maryland to appear in the ACC title game.
Still, there are bonuses within reach for Swinney.
Swinney earns a $20,000 bonus if Clemson reaches 10 wins, $30,000 for 11 wins and $40,000 for 12 wins.
If Clemson plays in a BCS bowl, Swinney earns $56,200. Those bonuses are increased if Clemson meets certain academic thresholds.
Swinney is in the first year of a new six-year contract.
Beginning in 2014, division and ACC titles will also be important for Clemson assistants’ compensation.
Swinney’s contract calls for an assistant coaching “salary pool” to take effect in 2014.
A pool would be created by taking Clemson assistants’ aggregate total compensation and multiplying it 6 percent for a division title, 10 percent for an ACC title and 18 percent for a national title. Those dollars would then be distributed among the assistants at Swinney’s discretion.
Chad Morris’ contract calls for his compensation to raise to the average of the top three paid assistants in the country if Clemson finishes with a top 10 offense this fall, but it’s a moot point this year as Morris is the top paid assistant in the country.
Swinney wants early signing period
College football does not have an early signing period but it is on Swinney’s wish list.
Without an early signing deadline Swinney says the sport “wastes of a lot of money” in extra recruiting-related travel and it “creates a lot of the garbage that goes on in recruiting.”
Swinney also addressed what he defines as a verbal commitment.
“If a guy is committed and he is taking other visits he is not committed,” Swinney said. “That’s what happens with young people. They are not sure what they want to do. Other people get involved. … The first thing I do is try to talk them out of (a verbal commitment). Then I define it so nobody’s mad. Some guys want to make a reservation and call up and cancel it later. That’s not how we do it around here.”
The nation’s No. 1 recruit, defensive end Robert Nkemdiche, decommitted from Clemson last week. Nkemdiche’s mother does not want him to play at Clemson and Nkemdiche wants to take other official visits.
Swinney said Clemson has no significant new injuries heading in the N.C. State game. Sammy Watkins (ankle/calf) is expected to start