Ohio State Buckeyes reveal Chip Kelly’s staggering salary as offensive coordinator

Chip Kelly, Ohio State Buckeyes
Credit: Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch / USA TODAY NETWORK

Last season Chip Kelly was the head coach of the UCLA Bruins, but after six years leading the program, the 60-year-old had enough. Kelly led the Bruins to a middling 35-34 record, including an 8-5 record in 2023. His season concluded with a win in the LA Bowl, yet Kelly evidently wanted to find a different job anyway.

It didn’t take long for Kelly to find his next fit, but he still surprised many around college football by taking a demotion from head coach to offensive coordinator, even if it was at a much more prestigious program with the Ohio State Buckeyes.

While Kelly is not the first or the only coach to seek a reduced role, surely Ohio State had to heavily incentivize the former NFL head coach to sign on as an offensive coordinator, right? We now have our answer.

According to The Athletic, Kelly will be paid a $2 million salary in 2024 to coordinate Ohio State’s offense. His salary will rise to $2.1 million in 2025 and $2.2 million in 2026. Kelly’s contract runs through the 2027 season.

Surprisingly, Kelly is not even the highest-paid assistant coach on Ohio State’s football staff. That honor goes to defensive coordinator Jim Knowles, who recently earned a raise and now makes $2.2 million.

While these numbers are impressive, they still fall well short of the nearly $6 million Kelly made as UCLA’s head coach last season. However, Kelly will have far less responsibility and fewer coaching duties, which should take a lot of stress way from his day-to-day life, plus Ohio State should be able to win a few more games than UCLA.

Meanwhile, coach Ryan Day is believed to make $9.5 million per season, making him one of the highest-paid head coaches in college football.

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