After a two-year leave of absence due to ill health, Jeff Tedford returned to the Fresno State Bulldogs and immediately delivered the level of success that fans had become accustomed to in his first stint with the program. Unsurprisingly, Tedford’s salary and net worth under his current contract make him one of the highest paid coaches in the Mountain West.
Jeff Tedford’s Salary and Contract in 2023
Tedford resigned from his position as head coach at Fresno State following a 4-8 season in 2019 due to heart-related health problems. Having fully recovered and following Kalen DeBoer’s departure to Washington, he signed a new five-year contract with the Bulldogs that keeps him with the program through the 2026 college football season.
Under that contract, Tedford will earn a total salary of $1,550,000 for the 2023 college football campaign. For those who prefer to know how much a college football coach makes per month, the Fresno State head coach will receive monthly installments of $129,166.67 through the calendar year.
Tedford’s salary contains several increases throughout the lifetime of the deal. His 2023 salary is $50,000 greater than in 2022—a year where he delivered a Mountain West title to Fresno State—and it will increase by the same amount again for the 2024 college football season.
However, his salary will take a significant jump for the 2025 college football season, where Tedford will earn $1,750,000 as the Fresno State head coach. In the final year of his current deal—the 2026 college campaign—he’ll earn an additional $100,000, bringing his salary to $1,850,000. That is, of course, assuming there are no changes to the contract.
Tedford’s return to Fresno State is just the latest chapter of a story that has seen the head coach and program intertwined throughout their footballing journey.
He first arrived at the university in 1981, playing quarterback for the Bulldogs and setting program records that at the time included career passing yardage and touchdown passes.
He returned as a volunteer assistant for two seasons in the late 1980s, with a three-year stint in the CFL punctuating a longer stretch where he was the QB coach (1992) and offensive coordinator (1993-1997) for the Bulldogs.
After a gap of almost 20 years, a successful homecoming as head coach saw Tedford turn around a program that had gone 1-11 in 2016 to a team that challenged for a Mountain West title. Landing the crown in 2018, his team suffered a torrid 2019 campaign before his health-related resignation.
“The Lord just happened to create this position again,” Tedford told a media conference on making another comeback to Fresno State ahead of the 2022 college football season. “I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. And I’m just fortunate that this is it.”
The Bulldogs clearly feel fortunate to have Tedford back at the helm. While there’s an ill-health waiver in his contract, any other sudden departure from the program will be costly for his new employer. There is a $1.5 million penalty if Tedford leaves for another job before the completion of the 2024 college campaign.
Tedford’s Net Worth
As a result of the new five-year contract he received on his return to Fresno State for the 2022 college football campaign, Tedford has a net worth of $8.25 million. His salary averages out to $1.65 million, making him one of the most valuable head coaches in the Mountain West.
However, Tedford’s salary isn’t the sum total of his net worth. As part of the contract signed at the end of 2021, there are a number of performance-related bonuses that can bolster his net worth.
Achieving seven or more regular-season wins triggers a sliding scale bonus that starts at $40,000 for seven wins and tops out at $120,000 for 11 wins. Each additional game win adds an extra $20,000 to Tedford’s bonus pot. If that regular-season success results in a divisional championship, he adds another $50,000, or $75,000 if they take home the conference title.
If regular-season success results in national recognition, there are a number of bonuses to bolster Tedford’s salary. A Conference Coach of the Year Award nets $30,000, but it will be doubled to $60,000 if he’s named as a National Coach of the Year. He can also earn up to $75,000 for a CFB Playoff ranking, $50,000 for a ranking between 11-25, and $75,000 for a Top 10 ranking.
The real money is to be made in the postseason. If Tedford leads Fresno State to a New Year’s Six bowl win, he pockets $350,000. Even a non-New Year’s Six game win nets him $100,000. If he guides the Bulldogs to a place in the College Football Playoff, he can earn up to $1 million by taking home the ultimate prize in college football.
Off-field success is also rewarded under Tedford’s contract. He can earn $145,000 if the football team achieves an NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) of 990 or above and the team GPA is above 2.9. There is a sliding scale down from there that rewards anything over a 950 APR and 2.6 GPA.