Colorado football defensive coordinator Robert Livingston's contract details revealed

Cincinnati Bengals defensive backs coach Robert Livingston talks with Cincinnati Bengals safety Vonn
Cincinnati Bengals defensive backs coach Robert Livingston talks with Cincinnati Bengals safety Vonn / Kareem Elgazzar/The Enquirer / USA TODAY

Colorado football defensive coordinator hire Robert Livingston will be paid the highest salary of his career thus far in Boulder, receiving a nearly $200,000 pay raise from his job as Cincinnati Bengals secondary coach.

"Livingston is considered a rising prospect in the coaching profession, leading Colorado to set up his contract to keep him from leaving for another job anytime soon," USA Today's Brent Schrotenboer prefaced before saying, "His pay jumps from $800,000 to $995,000 next year."

If Livingston pulls what we'll affectionately call a Ryan Grubb -- leaving the program before ever truly starting, just as Grubb did as Alabama offensive coordinator for a cup of coffee before taking the same job with the Seattle Seahawks -- then he'll face a financial penalty. But not if the job is a clear step up from his defensive coordinator role; i.e. head coach at the NFL or collegiate level.

"The contract also says if he takes an NCAA or NFL position during the first 120 days of his new job, he would owe the university liquidated damages of 80% of his salary," Schrotenboer prefaced before saying, "After that, he would owe 25% of his pay if he left for another job. However, those damages would be waived if he takes an undeniable step up in his career – as an NFL head coach or college head coach. Similarly, if he takes an NFL defensive coordinator job in the second year of his contract, those damages also are waived."

Chidobe Awuzie can vouch for new Colorado football DC Robert Livingston

As Denver Sports' Jake Shapiro notes, Chidobe Awuzie can vouch for Livingston and the impact the long-time Bengals position coach can have on one's trajectory at the next level.

"The best Colorado connection for Livingston may be the premier player he’s coached the past few seasons, Chidobe Awuzie," Shapiro prefaced before saying, "Chido was one of the best defensive backs in Buffs history so can he can vouch for the DC his alumni are getting, led by one of the best cornerbacks of all-time in Sanders."

Coach Prime's entire mindset behind hiring Livingston and offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur is to get his sons Shedeur and Shilo Sanders, as well as Travis Hunter, ready to play in the pros by the start of the 2025 NFL season. Livingston fits the bill, perhaps even more than Shurmur, given his success developing DBs like Awuzie.