The announcement of James Franklin’s potential contract extension could soon be on its way.
On Friday, a Penn State football recruit told PennLive that Franklin signed a five-year deal. In response, athletic director Sandy Barbour on Saturday released a written statement and did not refute that claim.
“Keeping James at Penn State for a long, successful tenure is a priority,” she wrote. “We will announce these details when appropriate.”
Barbour said in early May during the Coaches Caravan stop in York that the “important” terms of the impending extension were agreed on “a long time ago” and only the details remained.
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Franklin’s current deal runs through 2019.
Franklin was expected to sign an extension after leading the Nittany Lions to their first Big Ten championship since 2008 and their first outright title since 1994. Penn State’s run last season was historic — based on ESPN’s FPI, the Nittany Lions had just a 0.1 percent chance to win the conference after starting 2-2.
The terms of any potential deal are not yet known. But, according to USA Today’s salary database, Franklin was the 10th highest-paid football coach in the nation last season with a total pay of $4.5 million (and $5.4 million if all the bonuses are included.)
Barbour last offered an update on the extension nearly two months ago when she told the media to, “Stay tuned.” She spoke up again Saturday after a recruit, four-star wideout Solomon Enis (the son of Penn State All-American Curtis Enis), told a PennLive reporter he’s planning to take an official visit at the end of September.
Enis then casually tossed in the fact that, “Franklin signed a new five-year deal so he’s going to be there a minute while I’m there.”