With new $50 million contract, UConn's Dan Hurley keeps focus on the court

Tue, Jul 9, 2024
NCAAB News (AP)

With new $50 million contract, UConn's Dan Hurley keeps focus on the court

STORRS, Conn. (AP) - Even with a deal that would make him one of the highest-paid college basketball coaches in the country, UConn's Dan Hurley never let his thoughts stray far from what got him to the top of the men's college basketball world.

About a month after declining to become the head coach of the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers, Hurley agreed to a six-year, $50 million contract through the 2029-30 season. He will receive $6.375 million next season in addition to his $400,000 base annual salary.

"It is not something I obsess over," Hurley said on Tuesday. "If anything, I dragged my feet because I didn't want to look it over or read it or deal with it. We have been so focused on the basketball part but it is nice that it is over."

Keeping his assistant coaches on the staff and also dealing with the current aspects of college sports were a part of the new contract signed by the 51-year-old Hurley.

Hurley knows that Tom Moore, Luke Murray, and Kimani Young are as responsible for UConn winning back-to-back national titles as he is.

"It is hard to put together a staff because there aren't a lot of people who can work for me, just the intensity of how we go about our business and the way we run our program, it is a different intensity level," Hurley said. "I am tough on the people who play for me and work for me, I am demanding so it is always hard for me to find people to hire."

Hurley was quick to credit David Benedict, UConn's Director of Athletics, for taking care of things as he has done since hiring Hurley.

"Dave is as responsible as any of us for where we are at," Hurley said. "DB has been a good partner. We have had these conversations about the changing landscape of college basketball, the revenue sharing that is coming down the road here, the TV deals, and being able to take advantage and maximize our brand. Our brand is at the pinnacle of college basketball and our basketball excellence is here on both sides, how do we take advantage of that to the utmost so we don't fall behind.

"You want to stay so focused on your work that you can continue to accomplish more and more in your career. He has always gotten it done.

"He has provided us with the resources and does what we need to do to give us the resources to compete at the top."

UConn had four starters selected in the recent NBA draft with Alex Karaban the only returning starter for the Huskies.

Hurley said freshman Liam McNeeley, who is currently dealing with an ankle injury, is "as ready as any freshman who has come in."

Hurley believes he has a roster that can compete for a third straight national title.

"We are at a similar talent level of what the group (from last season) looked like," Hurley said. "You can see some real potential there."

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AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/college-basketball

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