The word is out on the numbers within the contract, and I think they're pretty reasonable. GVX has the full breakdown here, but the basic gist is this:
- 6 years
- starting at $2mil a year,increasing to $2.75 mil in 2014
- buyout: $7.5 mil 1st year, $5 mil last year
- walkout (Kiffin's choice to leave early): $1 mil first year, $200k last year
The numbers probably look a little odd, but consider that it's kind of a balance act. The more you pay in salary, the lower the buyout tends to get (and vice versa). This contract is low in pay, high in buyout. That's a great help to the University in the short term; unless things go absolutely horribly wrong, that leaves a fair margin for the department to rebuild their "disaster" fund. (It also leaves more room for assistants).
The same applies to the walkout margin. By lowering the walkout margin, the salary doesn't have to be quite as high. (It's a good faith kind of issue, sorta.) Basically, Mike Hamilton is banking on Kiffin staying for a while, which makes sense; if Kiffin fails, Hamilton is probably on his way out as well. So it makes sense for Hamilton to go ahead and roll the dice on Kiffin's success.
If Kiffin is unsuccessful, there probably won't be many people lining up to steal him, so a buyout isn't a concern. If he is successful, Hamilton should have little trouble drumming up any support needed to rewrite the contract if needed. All in all, it's probably a pretty good deal for the guy.
If you happen to find a pdf of the contract, please post it. That link has the numbers, but the contracts are always helpful and I'm too cheap to sign up for an account at places like Coaches Hot Seat for a lousy contract.