Louisville Coach Rick Pitino was in a bunch of coaching rumors. Although none of them were confirmed, or given a little attention to by Louisville, that did not stop people from whispering allegations about a possible coaching change.
Well all those whispers now should be silenced—Rick Pitino is not going anywhere.
According to University of Louisville officials, Coach Rick Pitino is said to sign an extension, while his current contract still will increase his salary by 2.5 million dollars annually on the first of July. He still has the three contract years left, and is set to receive a 3.6 million dollar bonus on July 1st. This means another seven years as Louisville’s head basketball coach.
Pitino started coaching at Louisville in 2001 and guided them to their first Final Four in nearly 19 years—in the years progressing.
When he reached Louisville, the season before the Cardinals were 12-19, seven games below .500, (8-8) in Conference USA, and did not participate in the NCAA Tournament.
Well in Pitino’s first year, the overall record improved to 19-13, and still (8-8) in Conference USA. Although the Cardinals did not make the Tournament, they did have the chance to participate in the NIT.
As the years progressed, Louisville made a transition to the Big East—after their Final Four appearance, to compliment the (33-5) overall and (14-2) conference record.
Over the next five years in the Big East conference, Louisville made the tournament all but once—highlighted by their two straight Elite Eight appearances.
This is a smart decision by Louisville, because they’ve silenced all the whispers and not even just that, they've locked up a future hall of fame coach for another seven years.
Rick Pitino is not just a great basketball coach, but he can recruit. He has pulled in guards like Edgar Sosa and Peyton Siva and forwards like Terrance Jennings and Samardo Samuels. That is just in recent years.
He doesn’t just acquire the recruits either—he builds them into good players, as you can tell by his four straight NCAA Tournament berths.
There are so many reasons why this happened and not a single one was bad. Rick Pitino is going to be a great coach for years to come—Louisville did itself a favor with this.