Last week the Clemson University Board of Trustees Compensation Committee approved a pay raise and contract extension for defensive coordinator Brent Venables.
Venables received a five-year extension through January 31, 2026, and a $100,000 raise that elevated his salary to $2.5 million. The raise made the Tigers’ defensive coordinator the highest paid assistant coach in the nation.
Former Clemson standout Ben Boulware sat down with The Clemson Insider last week and believes Venables is worth every penny and wants to stay at Clemson.
“I didn’t know he got a new contract, but he’s earned it. There’s always rumors about him being a head coach, but I don’t think he wants that stress or that he cares for all the hoopla that comes with being a head coach,” Boulware said.
Boulware knows that money talks but knows Venables wants to be a Tiger for the long haul.
“Times change and money will make you do a lot of things, but he obviously got the right offer and I’m glad because I know he wants to stay,” he said. “Coach Venables is my guy.”
Boulware played for the Tigers from 2013-16 and was a pivotal part of the school’s first national championship since 1981 when Clemson defeated Alabama 35-21 in January 2017. He anchored the defense at linebacker as an upperclassman and recorded 116 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss and four sacks during his senior season.
In Boulware’s assessment, he would not have reached his full potential if it wasn’t for Venables.
“I will ‘til the day I die speak highly of Brent Venables he changed my life as a football player,” Boulware said. “He is probably the main reason I had the career I did just because of the football lessons, hard work lessons, being organized, structured and consistent.”
He believes that Venables’ contributions to Clemson on the field are dwarfed by what he brings to the program off the field.
“I wouldn’t have had any of those accolades if it wasn’t for Coach V,” Boulware said. “He is an incredible football coach, leader, father, husband and Christian.”