Mississippi State defensive coordinator Geoff Collins is expected to get a contract extension to stay with Bulldogs program
January 20, 2014 12:20:42 PM
STARKVILLE - Mississippi State has come to an agreement on a contract extension with defensive coordinator Geoff Collins on a contract extension.
Sources have told The Dispatch MSU Sports Blog that the school's media relations department are currently putting a release together that is expected to available Monday afternoon.
Collins spent last season in his first season as the full-time defensive coordinator and the Bulldogs finished 33rd in the country in scoring defense (23.1 ppg).
"I looked right at my wife and asked her if I was ready to become a defensive coordinator," Collins said on Dec. 29. "She said to me, heck yeah you're ready for that' and well, I've been doing this as a career ever since."
Collins was suggested by numerous media outlets as a candidate for the open defensive coordinator position with Florida State, the 2013 national champions, but sources have said the extension is two years in length and expected to be a sizable raise in salary. According to USA Today, Collins drew a $291,700 annual salary in 2012 with MSU. His salary in 2013 was $325,000 - which put him 11th among defense coordinators in the Southeastern Conference.
(UPDATED 1:40 p.m.) - Mississippi State confirmed the details of Collins' new deal are a annual salary of $575,000 for the 2014 season and $625,000 in 2015. According to USA Today, the figure in the final year of the new contract would currently make Collins the seventh highest paid defensive coordinator in the SEC. Also, MSU announced "contract adjustments for the remainder of the MSU coaching staff are expected to be announced in the near future".
"Geoff is one of the bright defensive minds in all of college football," Mullen said in a university release. "We as a staff and I know our players are excited about his extension. We are building something special here at Mississippi State, and he understands what it means to be a part of the Bulldog family. He continues to raise expectations for our team defensively and is also a tremendous recruiter."
Messages and texts sent to MSU Director of Athletics Scott Stricklin and MSU football coach Dan Mullen were not immediately returned. All new contracts or increases in the financial salary pool for assistant coaches must be approved by the state of Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning.
"I am proud to be a Mississippi State Bulldog," Collins said in a university release. "We have a talented group coming back next season and believe it can be a special year for us. I look forward to continuing to develop our players both on and off the football field. Coming off another bowl win and with National Signing Day approaching, the direction of Mississippi State football is bright."
MSU is expected to have eight returning starters from its 2013 defensive unit that ranked fourth in the SEC in rushing defense (144.15 yards per game), fifth in SEC in passing defense (205.2) and tied for fourth in SEC in turnovers earned (25).
"Coach Collins immediately brought that juice and just brought some life to these guys that were desperately needing more energy into the program," MSU sophomore middle linebacker Benardrick McKinney said. "We as linebackers knew what kind of coordinator he would be but he immediately sold himself to the rest of the team by making this a big family."
In 2009, Collins was the defensive coordinator of a Florida International University program that led the Sun Belt Conference in total defense, scoring defense, pass efficiency defense and turnover margin. For his efforts, Collins was a finalist for the Broyles Award, given annually to the nation's top assistant coach, and this past winter was mentioned several times in multiple media outlets to the open defensive coordinator position at Georgia Tech University and the head coaching vacancy at FIU.
MSU still has a assistant coaching position open after offensive coordinator Les Koenning left for the wide receivers coach position at Texas.
All of the Dispatch MSU Sports Blog readers: feel free to follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/matthewcstevens for up-to-date Mississippi State coverage.