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December 12, 2012

Mixed feelings on offering extension to Fisher

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With 11 wins and an ACC Championship, Jimbo Fisher's third year as Florida State's head coach was his most successful. His team is also set to play in its first BCS Bowl game since January of 2006.

Despite these accomplishments, there is not uniform agreement among FSU decision makers to hand over a contract extension this offseason.

Fisher and his representatives were reportedly discussing a contract extension in the days following the Seminoles' ACC Championship win on Dec. 1. Currently, Fisher's contract runs through the 2016 football season and Warchant.com has learned that the discussions revolve around a one-year extension that would carry his contract through the 2017 season.

One source told Warchant.com that when asked for input, some members of Florida State's Board of Trustees advised president Eric Barron against giving FSU's third-year coach a raise or extension. According to this source the "overwhelming margin" of the board was against the idea.

However, another source with knowledge of the situation said that some trustees have lobbied for conditions to be met before any extension is doled out. Still, the source expects Fisher to eventually get the extension although Fisher garnering a raise would be "a stretch."

In this case, any input from other FSU leadership on Fisher's contract would be advisory only; The final decision rests with Barron.

When asked whether Fisher's request for an extension or raise had been denied, Barron's office issued this statement to Warchant.com:

"President Barron and Coach Fisher are in cordial discussions on a variety of issues. These talks are on-going and there is no information to relay at this time."

Sources say that part of those ongoing discussions include the financing for Fisher's assistant coaches and other staff.

Fisher and FSU Board of Trustees Chair Allan Bense could not immediately be reached for comment.

Fisher's current deal pays him a base salary of $2.75 million. Fisher has already earned $150,000 in bonuses for his team's accomplishments in 2012. He earned $50,000 for winning the ACC Atlantic Division, $50,000 for winning the ACC Title and another $50,000 for earning a berth in a BCS bowl game. Fisher could make another $50,000 based on FSU finishing in the top 10 of the AP Poll and has two $25,000 bonuses in play based on his team's academic performance.

Fisher was given a one-year extension with a continuation of the initial contract's financial terms last December, which took the deal through the 2016 season. FSU finished 9-4 and beat Notre Dame in the Champs Sports Bowl. The contract extension was officially announced just prior to kickoff of the bowl game.

Fisher also picked up a $950,000 raise following his first season as FSU's head coach. The Seminoles went 10-4 in 2010, helping Fisher get a bump from his original head coaching salary of $1.8 million.

If Fisher does not get an extension, Fisher's contract term will lag behind FSU's two biggest rivals.

Florida head coach Will Muschamp received a one-year extension earlier this year taking his current deal through 2017. Muschamp's base salary is $2.7 million. At Miami, second-year head coach Al Golden led Miami to a 7-5 season and was given a new contract last month that runs through 2020.

Florida State (11-2) will take on Northern Illinois in the Orange Bowl on Jan. 1.

Coaching staff changes

In addition to losing defensive coordinator Mark Stoops and defensive ends coach D.J. Eliot to Kentucky, running backs coach and special teams coordinator Eddie Gran will be leaving FSU as well. The 47-year old coach is expected to join newly hired Cincinnati head coach Tommy Tuberville as the Bearcats' new offensive coordinator.

Offensive coordinator James Coley has also been rumored to be on the list of candidates for the head coach opening at FIU. However, there has been no confirmation that these are anything more than rumors at this stage.



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