SI.com’s Pete Thamel reports that Virginia Commonwealth head coach Shaka Smart has agreed to a contract extension worth $1.5 million per year that will keep him at VCU though 2023.
Smart, who has turned the mid-major Rams into a legitimate national contender, has been a hot commodity in each of the past two offseasons. He was rumored as top candidate for the head-coaching openings at UCLA and Minnesota — both major-conference teams that reached the national tournament this season — but instead opted to remain in Richmond.
One of the major selling points of Smart’s new deal was reportedly a pump in funding for the basketball program, which would allow the team to pay its assistant coaches more and improve on other aspects such as equipment and improved travel arrangements.
VCU has compiled a record of 111-37 since Smart took over in 2009, with three NCAA tournament bids and a Final Four appearance in 2011.