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Auburn releases details of contracts for Malzahn, Pearl; gives football assistants big raises

Gus Malzahn isn't the only Auburn coach reaping rewards from the Tigers' run to the national championship game.

The school released details of Malzahn's six-year, $26.85 million contract Friday in response to open-records requests and disclosed that his assistants will get raises totaling $900,000.

Auburn also released the contract for new basketball coach Bruce Pearl, whose six-year deal is worth more than $15 million. It includes a $500,000 signing bonus and stiff penalties for violating NCAA rules or his show-cause order.

Malzahn would receive $300,000 for appearing in the national championship game and $200,000 if Auburn doesn't play for the Southeastern Conference title but does make it to one of the New Year's Day bowl games. He gets $500,000 for a national title.

Malzahn was hired for $2.3 million a year but got a big raise before the SEC championship game last December in his debut season.

He will get a much bigger buyout if Auburn fires him without cause. He'll get $2,237,500 for each year remaining on his contract. His initial buyout was for $500,000 a year.

If Malzahn leaves for another job, he'll owe Auburn the combined total of what Auburn owes any assistant coaches who don't go with him and aren't retained by the school, paid each quarter.

Malzahn is scheduled to make $3.85 million next season and receive a $250,000 annual raise up to $5.1 million in 2019.

Auburn offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee got the biggest raise among assistants. His salary goes from $350,000 to $600,000. Lashlee, defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson, co-offensive coordinator Dameyune Craig and co-defensive coordinator Charlie Harbison all have three-year deals, as does defensive line coach Rodney Garner.

The others have two-year contracts. All received raises:

— Johnson ($850,000), Garner ($550,000) and Harbison ($475,000) received $50,000 raises. Garner will receive $50,000 completion bonuses each year.

— Craig goes from $350,000 to $500,000 a year.

— Offensive line coach J.B. Grimes gets a $100,000 raise to $370,000.

— Tight ends/special teams coach Scott Fountain ($325,000); strength and conditioning coach Ryan Russell ($285,000) and running backs coach Tim Horton ($325,000) all got $75,000 bumps.

— Cornerbacks coach Melvin Smith's $25,000 raise puts him at $325,000.

Pearl's bonus-laden deal runs through June 30, 2020 and starts at $2.2 million his first year with a $100,000 raise each year. Auburn can fire him with cause if he violates his NCAA show cause order, which expires on Aug. 23, for violations while coaching at Tennessee, or if he is found guilty of major rules violations. He'd also owe Auburn $500,000 if that happens.

Pearl is barred from talking to recruits under the show cause sanction.

His 20 bonus clauses would include up to $600,000 tied to the NCAA tournament if Auburn wins a national title. He also gets more easily reachable incentives such as $25,000 for winning nine SEC regular season games.

If Pearl leaves Auburn before April 15, 2016, he'd owe $5 million. That figure then drops by $1 million a year before falling to $250,000 on April 15, 2020.

Pearl also gets eight tickets and two parking passes for each Auburn home football game, among other perks.