South Carolina gives Spurrier two-year extension

The Associated PressDecember 3, 2012 

— Coach Steve Spurrier has received a two-year contract extension that will keep him at South Carolina through 2017.

The university’s board of trustees unanimously approved the extension Monday. There was no salary increase in the deal. Spurrier is scheduled to again earn $3.3 million in 2013.

A year ago, trustees gave Spurrier two additional years on the contract after the football season, then voted him a raise of $475,000 this past February to his current salary.

Spurrier has led the Gamecocks to consecutive seasons with double-digit victories, a first in program history. No. 11 South Carolina finished 6-2 in the Southeastern Conference for a second straight year. Spurrier became the school’s all-time victories leader with his 65th when the Gamecocks defeated Clemson on Nov. 24.

South Carolina (10-2) faces No. 19 Michigan (8-4) in the Outback Bowl on New Year’s Day. Should the Gamecocks win, it would give Spurrier his third bowl win at the school – also tops for the program.

University President Harris Pastides said South Carolina was “delighted in the success we’ve been having.”

Athletic director Ray Tanner said Spurrier wasn’t concerned about his financial package, but thought adding two more years would help with football recruiting.

Spurrier was grateful to the school’s leaders for the contract extension.

“We have achieved a lot of goals, but we have not yet won the SEC championship,” he said. “Hopefully, we can do that within the next couple of years.”

The Gamecocks looked on track to contend for the league and national titles midway through this season. They were 6-0 and ranked third in the country after a dominating 35-7 win over Georgia.

But South Carolina dropped consecutive top-10 showdowns, losing at LSU (23-21) and Florida (44-11) to fall out of the championship chase.

Still, defeating rival Clemson for a fourth straight season left a good taste in Spurrier’s mouth. He and some players were honored Sunday at halftime of the Gamecocks’ basketball game and Spurrier couldn’t resist needling his state rival.

He explained to the crowd how his team had a difficult game with “that school from the Upstate.”

“As all of you know, it was a very close game,” Spurrier continued with a grin. “Went into the fourth quarter, our defense played very well, our kicker made his kicks and we were able to beat Wofford, 24-7.”

Incentives in Spurrier’s contract also remain the same as in the contract approved last February. In that deal, the school agreed to add the Outback Bowl to the list of other top-tier postseason games where Spurrier would earn $100,000 bonus for playing there.

Spurrier has already earned bonuses totaling $150,000 for 10 victories. He can get an additional $200,000 for an 11th win.

Tanner said Spurrier has elevated the football program in every way and “is well deserving of this contract extension.”

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