GRAMBLING, La (GSU News Release) - Grambling State University head football coach Broderick Fobbs is staying at GSU.
Fobbs, Interim Athletic Director Obadiah Simmons and GSU President Rick Gallot signed an agreement in the president’s office on Thursday (Oct. 20). The coach’s current contract was scheduled to expire in December 2016, and the new agreement extends his services through December 31, 2018. Gallot, who started as president on Aug. 1, said retaining Fobbs was one of his highest priorities.
“As a lifelong Grambling State football fan and as an alum, I know what we have in Coach Fobbs and I was determined to keep him as our coach,” said Gallot.
Coach said he loves his job and he is determined to do all he can to make the football program, athletics and his alma mater successful. “We’ve got something special going on here,” said Fobbs, “and we’re in the early stages of building of another legacy upon the great traditions developed by Coach Eddie Robinson, Prez (RWE) Jones and others. We’ve got a big job to do, and I’m grateful that President Gallot recognizes what our coaches and staff bring to the table.”
The agreement guarantees Fobbs $195,000, the salary he has earned since 2013. Fobbs said he did not want to accept a salary increase since the university is facing significant financial challenges and his coaches cannot receive salary increases at this time. Instead, the agreement is heavy on incentives, guaranteeing Fobbs additional compensation of up to $87,500 for specific goals, including winning the SWAC western division championship, being recognized as SWAC coach of the year, winning the Bayou Classic, winning the SWAC championship, winning the Celebration Bowl matchup between the SWAC and Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) football championship teams and if the G-Men are declared the Black College national champions. In addition, Fobbs has an additional incentive to do something he makes a priority already -- meeting or exceeding the NCAA benchmarks for Academic Progress Rate (APR). Student-athletes must attend classes, maintain specific grades and GPAs to remain eligible to participate.
In addition, the coach is provided with a salary bonus pool of $95,000 to be divided among his coaches based on specific incentives. For other coaches to be eligible to be considered for some of that money the team must win the SWAC western division, the SWAC championship and the Celebrity Bowl, widely seen as the national HBCU championship between the SWAC and Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) championship teams played in Atlanta on Dec. 17, 2016. It also includes incentives for the football team being recognized as the Black College National Champion, a regular season record above .500 and for meeting or exceeding the NCAA APR benchmarks.
Gallot and Fobbs agreed that the fall negotiations started soon after the president started and continued cordially as the football season got underway and continued. Fobbs said there was no doubt that he wanted things to work out, and that he was far more concerned about the impact on his coaches and staff than any specific amount for himself. “I have an amazing team of coaches and a wonderful staff and we wouldn’t be doing as well as we’re doing without their commitment and dedication to our student-athletes and this program,” said Fobbs. “We’re all in this together, and if I win, they win.”
The agreement with the football coach guarantees that Fobbs will stay at his alma mater through the 2018 season at the Southwestern Athletic Conference school, ensuring that the significantly rejuvenated football program continues its winning tradition on the gridiron, in the classroom and in the community.
Hired in December 2013, Fobbs was charged with strengthening the program under a three-year contract. Since he started, Fobbs has been named the SWAC coach of the year twice, in 2014 and 2015, and he has a 19-8 record overall and a 12-4 record since 2015. His G-Men started the season as a team to watch but were not picked to win the SWAC western division or the conference championship. After a strong 3-0 SWAC start and a 3-1 overall record this season, the team is widely seen as the favorite to win the division and the SWAC championship.
“Coach Fobbs has done an incredible job both on the field and off, and we have to acknowledge, appreciate and support that,” said Gallot.
“There’s no question that Fobbs and our winning football program have been a big part of attracting more attention and more applicants. With 70 percent more applications this year compared to last year this time, that’s phenomenal, and it shows that a winning program has a real impact on recruiting.”
"I'm thrilled that we've signed Coach Fobbs for another couple of years. He's a stellar leader and has done an amazing job with our football program in such a short period of time," added Simmons. “By all accounts, Coach Fobbs is ahead of schedule relative to program goals.”
Fobbs started his coaching career at a Texas high school before working as a graduate assistant at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette with then head coach Jerry Baldwin, now pastor of New Living Word Ministries in Ruston and a member of the university’s athletics director search committee. He coached at Northwestern State from 2002-07 and went to Lake Charles to coach at McNeese State University. He spent a stint at Southern Miss as wide receivers coach before returning to McNeese to coach tight ends for the Cowboys.