The University of Colorado and former head football coach Mike MacIntyre have reached a settlement agreement that will pay him $7.238 million to close out his contract.
MacIntyre, who was fired by CU on Nov. 18 and is now the defensive coordinator at Mississippi, will receive a lump sum of $3.542 million no later than Monday, and a second lump sum of $3.696 million on Jan. 20, 2020.
The agreement was executed on Tuesday and allows CU to save roughly $3 million on MacIntyre's buyout.
MacIntyre, who coached the Buffs from 2013 to 2018, had three years and $10.3 million remaining on his contract when he was terminated without cause in November. Per the terms of the contract, he was entitled to claim the full amount remaining on the deal, with CU making monthly payments through 2021.
"Through mediation, we have come to an agreement with coach MacIntyre on what we will pay him to fulfill the remaining obligations of his contract," CU spokesman Ryan Huff told BuffZone. "Each party had differing views on how much was owed based on various clauses of the contract. We are satisfied to come to this resolution so that CU and coach MacIntyre can move on. We thank coach MacIntyre for his six years of service to CU and wish him every success in his coaching career."
The settlement will be paid by the CU athletic department and Huff said the money will not come from tuition, taxpayer dollars or the campus general fund.
"CU Athletics will make these payments over the course of two fiscal years by managing expenses and earning increased ticket revenue," Huff said.
CU is expecting an increase in football ticket revenue this season because of an attractive home schedule, as well as a slight increase in ticket prices. In head coach Mel Tucker's first season with the Buffs, CU will host long-time rival Nebraska for the first time since 2009, while Air Force will make its first appearance at Folsom Field since Oct. 13, 1973. CU's home schedule also includes traditional Pac-12 powers USC, Stanford and Washington, as well as South division rival Arizona.
"Based on this schedule and excitement for coach Tucker's arrival, we have already sold 10 percent more in season tickets compared to where we were at this time last year," Huff said.
CU's settlement with MacIntyre brings closure to his mixed-results tenure with the Buffs, who went 30-44 under his direction.
Hired Dec. 10, 2012, MacIntyre inherited a program that was the worst in the Pac-12 and arguably the worst among all Power 5 conference teams. The Buffs went 4-21 in two seasons under Jon Embree before MacIntyre took over, including 1-11 in 2012.
During MacIntyre's first three seasons, the Buffs went 10-27 but showed steady progress.
In 2016, CU broke through, going 10-4, winning the Pac-12 South division and ending a nine-year bowl drought. The Buffs vaulted to No. 9 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll late in the season before finishing at No. 17. MacIntyre earned several national coach of the year honors.
MacIntyre reached his peak with CU on Nov. 26, 2016, when the Buffs defeated Utah, 27-22, to claim the South division and finish a 10-2 regular season.
From that point, however, it was a rocky road for MacIntyre and CU.
To finish the 2016 season, CU was routed by Washington, 41-10, in the Pac-12 title game, and by Oklahoma State, 38-8, in the Valero Alamo Bowl.
Shortly after the loss to Washington, on Dec. 9, 2016, the girlfriend of then-assistant coach Joe Tumpkin, reported to MacIntyre that she had been violently abused for the previous two years by Tumpkin. MacIntyre informed athletic director Rick George of the allegations, and then George informed chancellor Phil DiStefano. Despite that, Tumpkin was given defensive play-calling duties and put in the spotlight as a spokesman for the defense for the Alamo Bowl after coordinator Jim Leavitt had left for a similar job at Oregon.
In the weeks after the Alamo Bowl, Tumpkin was suspended and then eventually fired.
In the spring of 2017, CU commissioned an outside agency to investigate how MacIntyre, George and DiStefano handled the allegations. Ultimately, CU president Bruce Benson and CU's Board of Regents gave DiStefano a 10-day suspension and ordered George and MacIntyre each to pay $100,000 in fines to a domestic violence organization.
MacIntyre had agreed to a contract extension and raise in January of 2017, but that was put on hold because of the investigation. In July 2017, the Board of Regents eventually approved the deal, which was to pay MacIntyre $16.25 million over five seasons through 2021.
In September 2017, Tumpkin's then ex-girlfriend filed a lawsuit against MacIntyre, George, DiStefano and Benson, but that lawsuit was dismissed last July.
On the field, the Buffs failed to match the magic of 2016. They went 5-7 in 2017, but got off to a 5-0 start last season. The Buffs then lost six in a row, leading to MacIntyre's dismissal. CU closed the season on a seven-game skid.
Ole Miss hired MacIntyre as defensive coordinator on Dec. 10, signing him to a three-year contract worth $1.5 million per year.