Will Wade’s contract worth $1.175 million, includes 5-game suspension

Published: Mar. 14, 2023 at 11:53 AM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - New McNeese State men’s basketball Coach Will Wade’s contract is worth $1.175 million over five years.

Wade will also serve a five-game suspension at the beginning of the upcoming 2023-24 season and have various other recruiting restrictions, according to the contract.

The self-imposed suspension and restrictions appear to be a move by McNeese to get ahead of possible NCAA penalties or sanctions lobbied upon Wade from his time at LSU.

Wade, who was head coach of LSU from 2017-2022, was fired by the Tigers after an NCAA notice of allegations, which listed five Level I violation accusations and one Level II violation accusation against him. He was accused of offering cash payments to at least 11 prospective players, according to ESPN.

McNeese released the contract at KPLC’s request. The contract runs through April 30, 2028.

Wade will be paid $200K in his first year, with his salary increasing in the second year.

  • First year: $200K
  • Second year: $225K
  • Third year: $250K
  • Fourth year: $250K
  • Fifth year: $250K

Wade’s salary is comprised of a McNeese State University base salary of $200K and a McNeese State University Foundation annual premium benefit of the balance of the base salary, which will be paid in monthly installments, according to the contract.

In addition, Wade has the chance to receive the following bonuses:

  • Conference Regular Season Championship: $5,000
  • Conference Tournament- finals appearance: $5,000
  • Conference Tournament Championship: $15k
  • Each win at the NCAA tournament: $25k
  • NIT tournament appearance: $2,500
  • Each win at the NIT tournament: $1,000
  • Conference Coach of the Year: $10K
  • National Coach of the Year (limit of one): $20K
  • Coach shall receive a financial incentive award for each team with a NCAA Single Year Academic Progress Rate (APR) score that is at or above 985: $1,500
  • Coach shall receive a financial incentive for each team with a NCAA Multi Year Academic Progress Rate with a score at or above 975: $1,500

Wade will also receive a $500 monthly vehicle stipend if a courtesy/leased vehicle arrangement through a local dealership cannot be reached.

In addition to the five-game suspension, McNeese put in several other recruiting restrictions and safeguards.

  • McNeese will hire an additional NCAA compliance officer to work with Wade.
  • Wade will submit a weekly report on all recruiting activities, which will include phone calls and texts, which will be submitted to Deputy Athletic Director Bridget Martin. The report will also be forwarded to the Southland Conference league office.
  • Wade and his staff will participate in mandatory weekly NCAA compliance education classes conducted by Martin
  • Wade is not to have any off-campus recruiting-related activities through July 31, 2023.
  • Wade must reduce official visits by four during the 2023/2024 academic years.
  • Wade is banned from all recruiting conversations between Sept. 1, 2023, through Oct. 15, 2023.
  • Wade is banned from having any unofficial visits from Sept. 1, 2023, through Oct. 15, 2023.

Should Wade leave to become coach elsewhere, the contract includes the following buyouts, either from Wade or a third party:

  • From March 10, 2023 - April 30, 2024: $1 million buyout.
  • From May 1, 2024 - April 30, 2025: $500K buyout.
  • From May 1, 2025 - April 30, 2026: $250K buyout.
  • From May 1, 2026 - April 20, 2027: $250K buyout.
  • From May 1, 2027 - April 20, 2028: No buyout.

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