It looks like Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari is going to be a Wildcat for life.
“Where else would I want to coach?” Calipari said when asked about it on his weekly radio show.
Reuters reported that is believed to be a 10-year extension as head coach that would be followed by a role as a paid ambassador for the program.
Calipari is the highest-paid coach in college basketball, according to USA Today, making $9.2 million per year. His current contract runs through 2024, when he will be 64, so he’s still relatively young as coaches go. The extension conceivably will keep him on the Kentucky sidelines until 2034.
Calipari had been offered a six-year, $48 million offer to coach UCLA, according to The Athletic. But he reportedly turned it down last week, the report said.
John Calipari is staying at Kentucky, agreeing to a new long-term contract https://t.co/QvuL0LR2mq
— AP Top 25 (@AP_Top25) April 2, 2019
“It has nothing to do with the other stuff. … People call every year,” Calipari said of the UCLA offer, reported ESPN. “They presented it to me, and I appreciate it.”
— 97.3 The Game (@TheGameMKE) April 2, 2019
But he added there’s no place like home — Kentucky, that is.
“They want me to be here until I’m done coaching. This is a unique place, and I appreciate the opportunities I’ve had here,” Calipari said on his radio show, reported Reuters.
Calipari has been coaching at Kentucky since 2009. Before that he coached for nine years at Memphis and nine years at UMass.
He has taken all three schools to the Final Four — although the UMass and Memphis appearances were vacated over NCAA violations.
Calipari has taken Kentucky to four Final Fours — in 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015.
The Wildcats won the national championship in 2012.
Kentucky lost in the Elite Eight this year, falling to the Tigers 77-71.
Losing stinks. As I told the guys afterwards, it’s supposed to sting when you lose. If it’s doesn’t you’re not a competitor. This one is going to hurt for all of us for a while but it doesn’t take away from what this team accomplished this season and how much these kids grew.
— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) April 1, 2019
Calipari is 305-71 at Kentucky and a lifetime record of 708-209.
Since John Calipari took over as Kentucky’s head coach, the Wildcats have the most wins in Division I. pic.twitter.com/2rrqmKAmPv
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 1, 2019
Since he got to Kentucky, the program has more wins than any other Division I men’s program.
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