Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Rick Pitino, Louisville Agree to Contract Extension Through 2025-26

Louisville and head coach Rick Pitino recently agreed on a contract that will keep the Hall of Fame coach on the Cards' bench through 2025-26.

Here is the release from UL:

Louisville, Ky. -- The University of Louisville has extended the contract of men's basketball coach Rick Pitino four years, boosting his association with the Cardinals through the 2025-26 season.

The first coach in NCAA history to win a national title at two different schools and the first to take three different teams to the Final Four, Pitino had seven years remaining on his current contract, which had tied him with the Cardinals through the 2021-22 season.

In 30 seasons as a collegiate head coach at five different schools, Pitino has compiled a 722-254 record, a .740 winning percentage that ranks him 11th among active coaches. He has a 368-126 record in 14 seasons at UofL, the third winningest coach in Cardinal history. UofL is among the nations' top 10 programs in winning percentage under his guidance.

Pitino was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2013, lofty recognition for a lifetime of impressive basketball achievement. His up-tempo style, pressure defense, strong work ethic and family atmosphere have restored the Cardinals to national prominence where it is firmly seated.

His most recent Cardinals reached the Elite Eight in the NCAA Tournament appearance for the fifth time in the last eight years and played their first season in the Atlantic Coast Conference, finishing fourth among a league with five teams in the nation's top 25, including NCAA Champion Duke. He won his 700th game along the way.

Pitino guided the Cardinals to the 2013 NCAA Championship after claiming the nation's top overall seed in the NCAA Tournament and winning the BIG EAST Conference regular season co-championship and tournament titles. The Cardinals won a school-record 35 games while claiming their first NCAA title in 27 years. UofL reached its second straight and10th Final Four, marking Pitino's seventh, a total reached by only six coaches all-time.

A 2006 inductee to the New York City Hall of Fame, Pitino has the second-highest winning percentage in NCAA Tournament games among active coaches, winning 74.6 percent of his games in the post-season event with a 53-18 record in 20 tournament appearances.

Pitino's impact on the U of L program has gone well beyond his on-court success. The overall grade point average of the men's basketball team in recent years has set record figures and the Cardinals received an NCAA Public Recognition Award in the latest Academic Progress Rate with a perfect score. The Cardinals earned a collective 3.26 grade point average for the 2014-15 academic year and the team has produced around a 3.0 or better GPA for 14 consecutive semesters. Louisville placed a league-high seven individuals on the 21-member 2015 ACC All-Academic Team.

For three and a half years, Pitino served as president and head coach of the NBA's Boston Celtics. With the Celtics, he took over a team that had posted a franchise worst 15-67 record before his arrival. He quickly made an impact, improving the Celtics' victory total by 21 games in his first season. He resigned his position with the storied franchise on Jan. 8, 2001 after compiling a 102-146 record there.

He guided Kentucky to three NCAA Final Four appearances in his last five years at Kentucky, winning the 1996 NCAA Championship and reaching the national title game in 1997. In eight seasons with the Wildcats, he amassed a 219-50 record (.814) while winning two league crowns and an impressive 17-1 record in the Southeastern Conference Tournament.

Complete Release

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