Minnesota Golden Gophers, P.J. Fleck agree to new deal through '26

Fleck honored by new contract (1:39)

P.J. Fleck explains his decision to remain the head coach at the University of Minnesota through the 2026 season with a new seven-year contract. (1:39)

Minnesota coach P.J. Fleck has agreed to a new seven-year contract through the 2026 season, the school announced Tuesday.

Fleck's new deal, which is 65 percent guaranteed, starts at $4.6 million in 2020 -- an increase of $1 million -- with a $10 million buyout if he leaves after this season. The buyout drops to $4.5 million next season and to $3 million in 2021 and 2022.

The school's board of regents still must approve the new agreement.

Fleck is 20-13 in three-plus seasons at Minnesota, which is 8-0 for the first time since 1941 and 5-0 in Big Ten play for the first time since 1961. The 38-year-old Fleck had been mentioned as a candidate for Florida State's coaching vacancy and a potential candidate if USC makes a coaching change.

Fleck initially signed a five-year, $18 million contract with Minnesota in January 2017. He received two subsequent extensions and salary increases, and he was signed through the 2023 season at a salary of $3.6 million for this year. That deal required Fleck to pay $1 million to Minnesota for every remaining season on his contract if he left for another head-coaching position.

His new agreement is expected to include a notable increase for the coaching staff salary pool.

"It is a tremendous honor to lead this team and represent the University of Minnesota and this great state," Fleck said in a statement. "Our family absolutely loves Minnesota, and we are excited to continue to call this state home. We are building a championship culture -- one that our fans can be proud of -- through the academic, athletic, social and spiritual development of our student athletes."

Fleck on Oct. 26 became the second-youngest FBS coach to reach 50 career wins. He went 30-22 at Western Michigan and guided the Broncos to the Cotton Bowl in the 2016 season.

Minnesota hosts Penn State on Saturday in a matchup of 8-0 teams.