Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Jeff Horton Gets A Favorable Contract- For The U

Kent Youngblood has details of new Gophers OC Jeff Horton's contract figures which, if everything goes well, will pay him $590,000 over two years. Pretty good pay to run someone else's offense, no? Upon closer look, the deal looks very shrewd for Minnesota:

According to the contract, Horton will earn $250,000 during the upcoming season. If he's on the staff on March 1, 2011, he will get a $40,000 bonus. Horton is scheduled to make a $300,000 base salary in the second season of the deal. The contract officially runs through Feb. 15, 2012, and is contingent upon coach Tim Brewster remaining in his position.

The last part of the last sentence is the smart part for the Gophs: IF Tim Brewster remains as head coach into 2011, Horton will get his cash. If not, he gets his $250,000 and is shown the door with the rest of Brew's staff. $250K is a lot of money for just about any profession, but it's not a lot for an offensive coordinator of a Big Ten school.

This further explains why we ended up with a OC who has never called plays and, despite his good work with QB's at Wisconsin, hasn't been offered an OC position anywhere else. The contract is clear to everyone that it's a one-year lower salary deal, and IF , and only if, Brewster starts making good on his promises to improve the program and get us a seven or eight win season, then he and his entire staff are out the door.

It also gives me hope that if and when Brewster gets his contract extension Joel Maturi told us was coming, that a similar structure will be given, with a base salary, and bonuses contingent on him staying on. Or, even better would be an extension where the Gophs owe him nothing if he's fired, but I highly doubt he'd sign that.

Bottom line, it's a make or break year for Tim Brewster and the coaches at Minnesota: I hope Jeff Horton can fix the quarterbacks and our offense, I hope Brew can close strong and bring in some more good recruits for 2010, and I hope Kevin Cosgrove can get a bunch of young and talented kids to play at the level our 2009 defense did. If they don't, Maturi will find someone who will.


Gopher Bandanna Guy said...

I like it. Perform as a unit or you're out. Seems like exactly the right place to put this staff given the crossroads we may or may not be at.

I'd like to believe that Brew and Co. will survive the pressure cooker next season, and get us a few nice wins to hang our hats on, especially since we have homefield on all the tough ones.

Jeff - What kind of improvements are you expecting to see in the offense next year? I've kind of given up hope that Weber can return to the kid we enjoyed watching vs. MSU this year, and most of his 1st 2 seasons. Will Horton focus on improving the run game, in order to free up the passing? That's my hope. He and Tim Davis damn well better be sitting in some windowless bunker of a room in the bowels of the Bank right now, scheming ways to make our running game go-go-go.

Jeff said...

Really it doesn't matter what Horton does with the QB's if he can't get the o-line fixed. That's the key to running, game, the passing game, and quite honestly, the 2010 season.

While I'm not Weber's biggest fan, an improved running game and an o-line that can protect him would do wonders for him. Like you I hope Horton and Davis get this figured out.