Bill O'Brien said on both Monday and Tuesday that, despite the NCAA sanctions against his program, he was at Penn State for the long term. A clause in the head coach's contract backs up that claim.
O'Brien, who has yet to coach a game with the Nittany Lions, signed a five-year contract in January. That agreement, according to documents obtained by the Centre Daily Times, included the following addendum:
"Any sanction by the NCAA of a) loss of scholarships or b) bowl eligibility due to the actions of the previous staff or lack of institutional control prior to 2012 will immediately result in an automatic extension of coach's contract at 2016 total compensation and bonus package in years equal to the number of years of the sanctions."
The automatic extension equal to the number of years of the sanctions (four) means that O'Brien, after Monday's NCAA sanctions that included a four-year postseason ban and heavy scholarship reductions, is under contract through the 2020-21 season.
The coach's base salary is $950,000 for the first 13 months (taking effect in January 2012) with a 5 percent raise beginning in July 2013 and every year after. His annual income from television and radio contracts and Penn State's contract with Nike is estimated to pay him about $1 million additionally each year.
The terms of O'Brien's contract also state that if he decides to resign before the end of the contract, he would be required to pay the university a sum equal to his base salary for the remainder of the deal plus TV and radio money and funds from the Nike contract.