Minnesota finalizes contract extension and raise for Richard Pitino

The Golden Gophers won 25 games under Pitino — officialy the most in program history. (USATSI)

Richard Pitino enters year No. 3 with the Minnesota men’s basketball program as a richer man. The school has announced Pitino — who owns a 43-28 record with the Golden Gophers — received a new deal in the lead-up to the 2015-16 campaign.

Pitino’s updated contract has an extension on it through the 2020-21 season; he’ll earn $400,000 more per season as well in “supplemental compensation.” His contract terms now come out to $1.6 million/year.

Minnesota won an NIT championship in 2014, at the conclusion of Pitino’s first season with the team. That season Minnesota won 25 games, which is, kind of amazingly, a school record. (The 1996-97 team that reached a Final Four and won 31 games had its marks taken away by the NCAA due to academic fraud charges.)

“I am extremely grateful for this opportunity given to me by President Kaler, Beth Goetz and the University of Minnesota,” Pitino said. “Being the basketball coach at this tremendous university is something I cherish every day. My family and I love living in the Twin Cities and we look forward to continuing to build this basketball program the right way.”

Pitino’s buyout is north of $1 million if leaves Minnesota prior to April 30, 2017.

The terms of the contract were agreed to by Pitino and former Minnesota athletic director Norwood Teague months ago. Teague stepped down earlier this month after multiple accusations of sexual harassment — including one from a Minnesota beat writer — emerged. More accusations against Teague became public last week. Goetz is currently serving as Teague’s interim replacement.

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