Neither USC nor LSU will be swooping in to acquire Penn State Nittany Lions head coach James Franklin anytime soon.
Amid rumors Franklin was close to signing a long-term deal with the university, Penn State confirmed Tuesday he has put pen to paper on a new 10-year contract that keeps him linked with the program through 2031. The Athletic's Chris Vannini tweeted details about that agreement:
Per the contract, James Franklin will earn at least $7.5 million annually as part of the new deal (salary + retention bonus), plus an annual $1 million loan for life insurance.— Chris Vannini (@ChrisVannini) November 23, 2021
Buyout for Franklin to leave starts at $12 million through April 2022.
"Penn State's future is bright, and I'm honored to continue to serve as your head football coach," Franklin said for the released statement. "Nine weeks ago, the administration approached me about making a long-term investment in our football program. This prompted numerous conversations outlining the resources needed to be competitive at a level that matches the expectations and history of Penn State. What's most evident from those conversations is the importance of our student-athletes' success both on and off the field."
James Franklin would like some new facilities and has been quite public about that recently. https://t.co/w9M6ShS4IP— Chris Vannini (@ChrisVannini) November 23, 2021
In total, Franklin holds a record of 67-32 across his Penn State tenure that began in 2014. He guided the Nittany Lions to the 2016 Big Ten Championship and is set to make his seventh bowl appearance with the school.
Penn State is 7-4 this season.
"We are excited to have James Franklin lead our football program for a long time," Penn State athletic director Sandy Barbour added for the statement. "We will continue our collective efforts to constantly improve in all aspects of our program. We have made, and will need to continue to make, significant investment in our football program because we believe we have a very bright future under James. With this contract, we are signaling our sustained commitment to being one of the premiere programs in the history of college football. Our goals and aspirations relating to football have never wavered and our investments today and in the future of our program will allow us to compete at the highest level."
Franklin has often been mentioned as a favorite to land the USC job, but Jon Sauber of the Centre Daily Times notes the coach said at a State College Quarterback Club lunch last week he was "not going anywhere."