Intentional or not, Cal took out the trash Friday afternoon when it released Sonny Dykes' contract. That's the phrase journalists use when an entity releases news in the final hours of the workweek, hoping the news will get overlooked.

And if the Bears decided to release the contract on Friday specifically because they knew the NCAA was coming down on Saint Mary's earlier in the day? Well played, Bears. Well played.

But we didn't lose sight of Dykes' deal finally becoming a matter of public record.

Before we hit the details, one point: The $1.94 million per year average is not a surprise; it's on the high end of the range I anticipated but certainly within reason.

Far more important is the salary pool Cal has made available for assistant coaches, and the Bears did not release that information. (When they do, we'll be on it.)

How does Dykes' compensation compare to his 11 peers in the Pac-12? At $1.94 mill/yr, he ranks 10th, based on my notes on head coach salaries throughout the league.

Here's the list:

(Note: Figures don't include signing bonuses or payments to offset buyouts.)

  • Steve Sarkisian: $2.55 million

  • Lane Kiffin: $2.4 million (source: USA Today, based on USC tax filings)

  • Jim Mora: $2.4 million

  • Mike Leach: $2.25 million


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  • David Shaw: $2.25 million (estimate, based on info from sources)

  • Rich Rodriguez: $2.025 million

  • Todd Graham: $2 million

  • Mike MacIntyre: $2 million

  • Kyle Whittingham: $2 million

  • Sonny Dykes: $1.94 million

  • Mark Helfrich: $1.8 million

  • Mike Riley: $1.3 million

    (Rodriguez also has $125,000 per year placed into a retention fund payable every two years.)

    A few items of note from the contract, which, per Cal policy, does not involve state money:

  • First, because it was such a big deal with Jeff Tedford, here are the buyout clauses — what it would cost Cal to fire Dykes without cause and what it would cost Dykes to break his deal:

  • If Dykes is fired in 2013, he will receive $3,750,000.

    In 2014, the figure drops to $3,000,000

    In 2015, it's $2,250,000.

    In 2016, it's $1,500,000

    In 2017, it's $750,000.

    (Everything about the buyout clause in Dykes' deal is more carefully written, and more clearly spelled out, than it was in Tedford's contract.)

  • If Dykes leaves Cal in 2013, he owes the school $3,000,000.

    If he leaves in 2014, he owes $2,500,000.

    If he leaves in 2015, he owes $2,000,000.

    If he leaves in 2016, he owes $1,000,000.

    If he leaves in 2017, he owes $750,000.

    Yes, there is a mitigation clause: Dykes must make "reasonable efforts to obtain employment at a BCS level head coach or coordinator."

  • Base salary: $250,000 annually.

  • Talent fee: Starts at $1,550,000 and rises to max of $1,850,000.

  • Performance bonuses for the first three seasons, which are payable so long as the single-year APR is at least 930 thru '15 and at least 930 on four-year average starting with the '16 season.

  • Rose Bowl: $60,000

  • Other BCS bowls: $50,000

  • Alamo Bowl: $40,000

  • Holiday Bowl: $30,000

  • Other bowl: $25,000

  • Wins 11 regular-season games: $45,000

  • Wins 10 regular-season games: $40,000

  • Wins 9 regular-season games: $35,000

  • Wins 8 regular-season games: $30,000

  • Wins 7 regular season games: $25,000

    The bonuses for the last two seasons of Dykes' deal are identical when it comes to bowl games and a bit less for regular-season win totals.

  • Signing bonus: $594,000 (offsets what Dykes paid Louisiana Tech for breaking his contract).

  • Academic performance bonuses: They are broken into three categories: GPA, APR and GSR (Graduation Success Rate). Dykes receives a top end of $23,000 and a low end of $10,000 in each category.

    There you have it. Nothing outlandish.

    Now we wait for the assistants salary figure.

    For more on college sports, see Jon Wilner's College Hotline at blogs.mercurynews.com/collegesports. Contact him at jwilner@mercurynews.com or 408-920-5716.