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Brent Venables Gets Extension From Oklahoma Ahead of Season


Brent Venables
© SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN/USA TODAY NETWORK

The Oklahoma Sooners will begin their first season in the Southeastern Conference in less than 70 days and coach Brent Venables will see the football program through the transition for the foreseeable future after signing the national championship-winning coach to a six-year contract extension.



Dollars Makes Sense

Venables has solidified his position in the coaching world with a new six-year deal, bringing his total contract value to just more than $51 million by the 2029 season. This significant salary increase will place him among the top coaches in the SEC, ranking seventh after Nick Saban's retirement and Jimbo Fisher's departure. In the broader landscape of college football, Venables's salary would position him as the 13th highest-paid coach.


The Sooners and Venables agreed on a six-year deal worth $43.5 million when he was hired to take over the program after Lincoln Riley left for USC. This is a new restructuring of his contract, going from that six-year $43.5 million deal through the 2027 season. This comes down to a two-year extension to keep up with inflation and let fans and recruits know that with the rise in program commitment, the athletic department is behind Venables and what he is doing.



Venables at Oklahoma

The 53-year-old coach, on his second stint in the Crimson and Cream, is taking this storied program into one of the most history-rich conferences in collegiate athletics. Venables looks to continue to improve overall talent and play at Oklahoma, building on the team's 10-3 record, including a victory over the Red River Rivalry opponent, the Texas Longhorns, which was a far better showing than the 6-7 record in year one.



The Sooners have been gearing up for this move to the SEC ever since Venables took over—recruiting has been focused on playing in what most football fans think is the standard of college football. Landing players like David Stone in recruiting and getting instant help from players like former TCU defensive lineman Damonic Williams adds to a defense with two of the best players in the country in returning starters, Billy Bowman and Danny Stutsman. This should lead to a defense that is more like what fans saw from the Clemson Tigers' championship defenses, while Venables was the defensive coordinator there.


Brent Venables
© SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN/USA TODAY NETWORK

Venables will still have to prove he can make the coaching decisions to win close games and how to prepare his team to go on the road and play in environments every weekend, unlike what they were used to in the Big 12 Conference. Venables and the Sooners will have to improve on the 3-7 record in one-score games as well as get their first bowl victory under Venables. The Sooners are 0-2 in bowl games under Venables.








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