Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Beachwood-based agent Neil Cornrich's clients have struck plenty of new deals in 2020

Sports Business
March 19, 2020 12:34 PM | UPDATED 7 MINUTES AGO

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Cleveland native Mel Tucker left Colorado for Michigan State, which will pay its new head football coach at least $5.5 million per year.

The start of the new league year in the NFL this week has brought the usual flurry of action to Neil Cornrich's schedule.
The first couple months of 2020, though, were a testament to the strength of another arm of the Beachwood-based agent's business: the myriad of college and NFL coaches he represents.
Last weekend, the Washington Redskins placed the franchise tag on guard Brandon Scherff. The move guarantees Scherff, the fifth overall selection in the 2015 draft, $15.03 million this season.
Two other Cornrich clients, center Austin Blythe and special teams standout Nate Ebner, agreed to one-year deals this week with the L.A. Rams and New York Giants, respectively. Blythe made $2.025 million with the Rams last season. Ebner spent the previous eight seasons in New England and just completed a two-year, $5 million deal.
Cornrich's clients in the coaching business have fared pretty well, too.
The biggest move in 2020 was Mel Tucker leaving Colorado to take over at Michigan State. Tucker more than doubled his salary when he landed a six-year deal that is worth more than $5.5 million annually. The Cleveland native will make at least $1.2 million more per year than Mark Dantonio, his predecessor at Michigan State.
Tucker's salary is expected to rank among the top 12 in college football. Sixteen head coaches made at least $5 million last year, according to USA Today's database.
Other notable deals involving Cornrich's clients in the pro and college ranks are as follows:
• Bo Pelini left Youngstown State, where he had been the head coach since 2015, to become the defensive coordinator at LSU. The Youngstown native is believed to be one of the two highest-paid defensive coordinators in college football after securing a three-year deal worth $2.3 million annually.
Pelini's salary was much lower at Youngstown State (in the $214,000 range), but until February 2019, he was owed $150,000 a month by Nebraska, which fired Pelini after a 9-3 regular season in 2014.
• Texas lured Mike Yurcich from Ohio State with a three-year deal that will pay the Longhorns' new offensive coordinator $1.7 million per year. The Euclid native nearly doubled his $950,000 salary at Ohio State, where he was the passing game coordinator and quarterbacks coach.
At the time Yurcich signed his deal, he was the highest-paid offensive coordinator in college football. Prior to spending a year at Ohio State, Yurcich was the offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State for six seasons.
• Tucker wanted to have Vince Marrow join his coaching staff at Michigan State, but the assistant stayed at Kentucky and was rewarded with a contract that will pay him $900,000 per year through 2022. Marrow, a Youngstown native, is the Wildcats' associate head coach, tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator.
• Jimmy Brumbaugh, who was a member of Tucker's staff at Colorado in 2019, is now Tennessee's co-defensive coordinator and defensive line coach. Brumbaugh will get $650,000 in each of the next two years.
• Bob Diaco left Louisiana Tech, where he was the defensive coordinator, to become the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at Purdue. Diaco was Connecticut's head coach from 2014-16 and made a combined $1.7 million in 2017 and '18, when he was the highest-paid assistant in Nebraska history.
Cornrich also negotiated a few deals for NFL assistants this year.
• Josh Boyer, a former Kent State assistant, was promoted to defensive coordinator of the Miami Dolphins. Boyer was Miami's cornerbacks coach and defensive passing game coordinator in 2019.
• Darrin Simmons signed an extension with the Cincinnati Bengals, for whom he has worked since 2003. Simmons is the Bengals' assistant head coach and special teams coordinator.
• Phil Rauscher, after spending the last two years as a Washington Redskins assistant, is the Minnesota Vikings' new assistant offensive line coach.
Cornrich's most prominent client is Bill Belichick, who hasn't gotten a new deal but will have a new quarterback after the surprising exit of Tom Brady.
The longtime agent also represents Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel and Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz.
His player roster includes Trey Flowers, who struck it rich as a free agent in 2019, when he signed a five-year, $90 million contract with the Detroit Lions.

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