LAFAYETTE — Mark Hudspeth has a new deal.
Louisiana-Lafayette announced Friday morning that school officials and the Ragin’ Cajuns football coach agreed to a new six-year contract that runs through the 2019 season.
The contract, which will include a base salary of $950,000 per year plus incentives, is subject to approval by the University of Louisiana Board of Supervisors.
“The new contract is a show of faith between the university and Coach Hudspeth in that both sides agree the football program is headed in the right direction,” UL-Lafayette Athletic Director Scott Farmer said. “Since his arrival on campus, Coach Hudspeth’s personality, work ethic and presence in the community have transformed our football program into a consistent winner, and have led to record attendance at Cajun Field. We could not have done this without the tremendous support of our fans.”
Hudspeth, who is 27-12 in his first three seasons as head coach, has led the Ragin’ Cajuns to a Sun Belt Conference title and three consecutive victories in the New Orleans Bowl.
“I’m very appreciative to Dr. (Joseph) Savoie, Scott Farmer and the Board of Supervisors for putting their trust in myself and our coaching staff,” Hudspeth said. “I’m very pleased with the contract. It’s good for both parties. This adds a lot of stability to our program in terms of recruiting and fans will see that both parties are committed to a common goal — and that is continuing to build our football program one day at a time. This also says that we’re ready to take the next step in becoming a major program. I’m proud to be a part of our university, and I’m proud to be the head coach of the Ragin’ Cajuns.”
The Louisville, Mississippi, native inherited a program that finished 3-9 in 2010 and immediately turned around the Ragin’ Cajuns’ fortunes by leading the team to a 9-4 record and a third-place finish in the Sun Belt. The Ragin’ Cajuns earned a trip to the New Orleans Bowl — their first bowl bid since 1970 — and the Cajuns posted a 32-30, last-second victory over San Diego State. Attendance at Cajun Field during Hudspeth’s first season reached record levels with a Sun Belt-record average 29,171 fans, an increase of nearly 12,000 per game.
The Ragin’ Cajuns also finished 9-4 in 2012 and 2013, winning the Sun Belt title last season and earning bowl victories over East Carolina (2012) and Tulane (2013). The 2013 game drawing a New Orleans Bowl record crowd of 54,728.