The University of Missouri and head football coach Barry Odom have agreed to a two-year contract extension that will keep Odom in Black and Gold into 2023, Mizzou Director of Athletics Jim Sterk announced today. The Memorandum of Understanding is subject to approval by University President Mun Choi and the Board of Curators at a future meeting.
“I am excited for the future of this program, as we have made positive steps over the course of the last two years,” Odom said. “I am so appreciative of my team and staff; they continually work together to make Mizzou Football a great representative of our University.
“The stability that this will provide for us to continue to provide a foundation for our student-athletes to be successful for the next 50 years of their lives is important,” he added. “The leadership from Mr. Sterk and our administration is moving Mizzou forward in a great way, and I am certainly grateful for their support.”
All financial details of Coach Odom’s original contract remain in place with one additional incentive surrounding football ticket sales being added to the agreement. According to the MOU, in any season during the agreement that ticket revenue from Mizzou home football games exceeds $11.7M, Odom will receive an amount equal to 20% of that amount.
“We are pleased that we were able to reward Coach Odom for his performance this season with a two-year contract extension,” Sterk said. “Coach Odom and his staff are building a strong foundation for Mizzou Football that will ensure continued academic and athletic success for our student-athletes
“Mizzou Football has great momentum on the field with six-straight victories heading into the Texas Bowl, one of the top football Graduation Success Rates in the Southeastern Conference and ground-breaking for the new Memorial Stadium South End Zone Building slated for early next year,” he added. “Coach Odom has tremendous passion for Mizzou and I look forward to watching him lead our football program for many years to come.”
In just his second year as a head coach at his alma mater, Odom has put together one of the more remarkable seasons in school history, with his 2017 Tigers on the verge of making NCAA history, as well. Odom’s Tigers stand 7-5 overall after closing the year with six-straight victories that earned national acclaim after they rebounded from a 1-5 start.
His team earned an invitation to the 2017 Academy Sports + Outdoor Texas Bowl for its effort, and if the Tigers can pull out a win against the Texas Longhorns, Mizzou will become only the second Power Five school in history to win eight games in a season in which it started 1-5 (Rutgers pulled the same feat in 2008). Coming off a 4-8 season in 2016, Mizzou was picked to finish dead last in the seven-team Southeastern Conference Eastern Division by the pre-season pundits, but the Tigers defied the prognosticators as they ended tied for third at 4-4 in league play – becoming the first SEC team to ever start 0-4 in conference play and finish 4-4.
In the classroom, Mizzou Football produced the Southeastern Conference’s third-best Graduation Success Rate (85) score according to data released last month by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The Tigers most-recent GSR score is a program record and ranks some nine points higher than the national FBS average score (76).
Odom becomes the first Mizzou coach to make a bowl game in his second year at MU since Warren Powers did so in each of his first two seasons in 1978 and 1979 (and just the fifth Tiger skipper ever, joining Gwinn Henry, Dan Devine, Al Onofrio and Powers). The 2017 Texas Bowl will mark the seventh postseason classic of his coaching or playing career – he’s 2-2 as a coach (1-0 at Memphis as defensive coordinator and 1-2 at Mizzou), and went 1-1 as a player for former Coach Larry Smith.
A longtime fixture at Mizzou, Odom, 41, is guiding a program he has been immersed in at every level for some 16 years – including six in an administrative capacity (2003-08), six as a coach (2009-11, 2015-17) and four as a highly-successful student-athlete (1996-99). Heading into the Dec. 27 Texas Bowl, his two-year mark stands at 11-13 overall – the best 24-game start by a Mizzou coach since Powers was 15-9 through the same number of games in 1978-79.