Ball State coach Pete Lembo has agreed to a five-year extension that will keep the coach with the Cardinals through the 2018 season, the school announced on Friday. CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman first reported the news on Thursday.
Lembo has record of 25-13 in three seasons at the school, including a 10-3 mark in 2013, the coach's best since coming over from Elon. Feldman reports that Lembo's new deal will "include some program and facility enhancement," and the school announced that Lembo's title changes "from head football coach to head football coach and associate athletics director" as part of the extension.
In a statement, Lembo said he is excited for the future of the Ball State program.
"We are pleased with what we have accomplished at Ball State the last three years and look forward to continuing to build a quality football program along with our student-athletes, coaching staff and the University administration,” Lembo said.
Ball State athletic director Bill Scholl said Lembo's extension is a sign that the school supports the direction of the football program.
“Since I arrived at Ball State, I have spoken of our coaches building programs the right way to achieve sustained success,” Scholl said. “This contract extension recognizes the exemplary work Pete has accomplished over the past three years and the direction our football program is heading. Our record has improved every year in his tenure and the culture Pete has created within his program is one of the best in the conference.”
According to Feldman, Lembo's new contract should make him the highest-paid coach in the MAC.
Ball State was 6-18 in the two seasons before Lembo took over. He has had some success against big-name programs.