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Why do ADs rush to extend coaches' contracts?

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For the life of me, I do not understand why athletic directors hand football coaches contract extensions at the first sign of success (and in some cases, without any sign of success). It seems that all it does is increase the cost of the inevitable buyout. Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley has done it twice, once with Ron Zook (who never lost fewer than five games in a season after taking over a top ten program), and then with Will Muschamp, who rewarded the school for extending him with the program's first losing season in 35 years. The extension for Muschamp, which included a provision for a $2M payout for every year remaining on his contract if he were fired, guaranteed that the university would be stuck with him even after last year's 4-8 season which included a home loss to 6-4 FCS team Georgia Southern.


UNLV also appears to have boxed themselves in with Bobby Hauck. Hauck appeared to be on his way out after three consecutive two-win seasons. However, he was given an extension after last season's 7-6 mark, which included the school's first bowl trip since 2000. However, one decent season does not constitute sustained success. The 2014 season for the Rebels has started disastrously, with a 58-13 blowout loss at Arizona and a 13-12 win at home over Northern Colorado, one of the worst teams in the FCS Big Sky Conference (1-11 last season). 

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