OSU’s Ryan Day gets pay raise, contract extension through 2028

Ryan Day, Chris Holtmann and Kevin McGuff are among Ohio State coaches set to receive new contracts or extensions of their current deals this week.

The school’s full board of trustees is set to vote on the contracts Thursday after they were approved by the board’s Talent, Compensation and Governance Committee on Wednesday.

Day, who was promoted from offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 2019 when Urban Meyer retired, has agreed to a two-year extension and is set to be a Buckeye through the 2028 season. He will receive an annual compensation bump from $7.6 million to $9.5 million. The latter figure matches the annual value of a new deal Michigan State agreed to with Mel Tucker last fall to make him the highest-paid coach in the Big Ten for the upcoming season.

Alabama’s Nick Saban was the highest-paid coach in the country last season at $9.5 million according to USA Today’s salary database.

Day’s teams have won the Big Ten and made the College Football Playoff in two of his three seasons. He is 23-1 against conference foes, including 1-1 against Michigan, and 34-4 overall with wins in the Sugar Bowl and Rose Bowl.

He is widely credited with souping up an Ohio State offense that had gone stale in the latter Meyer years, but Day’s defenses have struggled in two of his three years as head coach. He completed an overhaul of the staff on the defensive side following the 2021 season.

Holtmann, who is 107-56 in five seasons at Ohio State, will have his contract extended three years through the end of the 2028 season. His total compensation was just over $3 million last year, and he is set to make $3.5 million annually under the new terms.

McGuff came to Ohio State from Washington on an eight-year contract in 2013, but that deal was automatically extended for winning the Big Ten regular season or conference tournament championship.

His new deal will keep him in Scarlet and Gray through the end of the 2026 season. McGuff’s original base salary was $500,000 but will increase to $675,000, and his total annual compensation will be $1.05 million.

Holtmann and McGuff were both hired with an eye on making Ohio State’s basketball programs national contenders annually, but neither has taken his team to a Final Four or Elite Eight.

McGuff’s teams won the Big Ten regular season title in 2017, ‘18 and ‘22 along with the conference tournament title in ‘18. Last season, they made the Sweet 16 for the third time in McGuff’s tenure, but the Buckeyes still have not made the Elite Eight since their Final Four run in 1993.

Holtmann’s first Ohio State team finished second in the Big Ten, but the Buckeyes have not fared better than fourth since.

Men’s hockey coach Steve Rohlik and men’s lacrosse coach Nick Myers also will remain at Ohio State after Rohlik agreed to a new five-year contract and Myers received a two-year extension.

Rohlik is the two-time Big Ten and national coach of the year and has a 162-127-36 record in nine seasons at Ohio State. His tenure includes one Big Ten regular season championship and one Frozen Four appearance.

Myers is Ohio State’s all-time winningest across coach, and his teams have earned four NCAA Tournament bids in his 14 seasons.

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