Ed Orgeron, Dabo Swinney

LSU coach Ed Orgeron (left) and Clemson coach Dabo Swinney (Advocate and AP photos).

LSU football may have dropped out of the rankings this week, but its coach has moved up a spot in the financial rankings.

Ed Orgeron has officially leapfrogged Dabo Swinney into No. 2 on that list after the longtime Clemson coach became one of many to agree to a reduction in compensation amid the pandemic, according to USA Today's annual coaching salaries database.

Orgeron and Swinney most recently faced off as head coaches on opposing sides of the College Football Playoff championship game in New Orleans last season. LSU won 45-24, ending Clemson's bid for back-to-back titles.

Orgeron is now second to only Alabama's Nick Saban, who also has not had any reported compensation changes.

In all, 59 head coaches are listed with some form of reduction, with Swinney's decrease of $1.25 million marking the largest total. The decrease comes in the form of Swinney forgoing a $1 million retention payment for this season as well as a $250,000 raise he was scheduled to receive.

That drops his total pay for 2020 to just over $8.3 million, still good for No. 3 on the list. Orgeron clocked in a bit over $8.9 million, while Saban leads the list at $9.3 million.

Four SEC coaches have reported reductions, all in the bottom half of head coach pay around the conference: 

  • Will Muschamp, South Carolina: $470K  
  • Eli Drinkwitz, Missouri: 100K
  • Lane Kiffin, Ole Miss: $275K
  • Sam Pittman, Arkansas: $250K

Three of those coaches (Kiffin, Drinkwitz and Kiffin) are in their first years as head coaches with their respective schools. Muschamp is in his fifth year at South Carolina.

For the full report from USA Today, click here.

Ed Orgeron gets raise, contract extension after LSU national title; see contract details


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Email Jeff Nowak at jnowak@theadvocate.com

Twitter: @Jeff_Nowak