Amid Auburn rumors, Mario Cristobal gets new 6-year, $27M deal at Oregon

Sam Cooper
·3-min read

Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal has agreed to a lucrative, new contract extension.

After several days of speculation surrounding Cristobal and the head-coaching opening at Auburn, the University of Oregon’s board of trustees formally approved the new contract for Cristobal on Thursday.

The deal spans six years (through the 2025 season) and is worth $27.3 million. With the new deal, Cristobal’s base salary will increase from $2.7 million this year to $4.3 million next year. The university said Cristobal’s extension is “funded through private athletic gifts.”

Cristobal, 50, is in his third season at Oregon and has a 24-9 record, including a Pac-12 title and Rose Bowl victory in 2019. The Ducks have a 3-2 record this year but are playing in the Pac-12 title game on Friday after Washington was unable to represent the Pac-12 North due to COVID-19 cases within the program.

"Mario has been a tremendous leader, and we are excited that he will continue to lead Oregon Football," Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens said. "He has built a strong culture and foundation within our program in a very short period of time and I am confident we will continue to build upon the success we have experienced so far and reach even greater heights. We look forward to the future of Oregon football under Mario's continued leadership."

Added Cristobal: "I am humbled and honored to be part of the best college football program in the country. The tremendous commitment from the University and our administration to our student-athletes, coaches, and support staff is unmatched and has been unwavering since day one.”

Oregon coach Mario Cristobal celebrates an Oregon touchdown during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Oregon State in Corvallis, Ore., Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Amanda Loman)
Oregon coach Mario Cristobal celebrates an Oregon touchdown during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Oregon State in Corvallis, Ore., Friday, Nov. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Amanda Loman)

According to The Register-Guard, discussions about a new contract for Cristobal began after the Ducks beat Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl but those talks were pushed aside with the university experiencing budget issues amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

But when Auburn moved on from Gus Malzahn on Sunday, Cristobal’s name quickly came up in the media as a potential candidate. Cristobal is a former assistant at Alabama and Miami known for recruiting South Florida. When asked about the Auburn rumors, Cristobal on Monday told reporters that he trusted “the people here at Oregon.”

Cristobal said Thursday that he wants to build upon the success he has already had at Oregon.

“I am grateful to President Schill and Rob Mullens for all of their support and for entrusting our staff with the future of Oregon football. We are just getting started, and I am fired up to relentlessly work and build upon the success so far,” Cristobal said. “We are privileged to call Oregon home, and we love the sense of family and community here at Oregon. We will continue to work tirelessly to elevate the Oregon football program to the next level, and we can't wait to see the best fans in the nation back in Autzen Stadium next fall.”

Oregon signed a top-five recruiting class at the start of the early signing period on Wednesday.

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