The 2014-15 season was a special one for the Wyoming Cowboys, as not only did they reach the NCAA tournament for the first time in 13 years but their Mountain West tournament title was the program’s first conference tournament title since 1988. The Cowboys’ 25 wins were the most in a season for the program since 1988.
Those achievements were the most recent steps forward for the program in Larry Shyatt’s second go-round in Laramie (he was head coach for the 1997-98 season), and Wednesday the school announced that it has rewarded its head coach (and his assistants) for their success.
Wyoming and Shyatt have agreed to a contract extension, resulting in his deal now running through the 2019-20 campaign. Also of note in the contract is the fact that all three of Shyatt’s assistants have been taken care of. Allen Edwards and Jeremy Shyatt will reach receive retention bonuses of $100,000, with associate head coach Scott Duncan (who has a two-year deal) receiving an extension of his contract through the 2016-17 season.
Since returning to Laramie in 2011, the elder Shyatt has led Wyoming to four postseason appearances with three being to the CBI (2012, 2013 and 2014) before last year’s NCAA tournament berth.
Getting back to the NCAA tournament in 2016 will require the Cowboys to account for the loss of some key players from last season’s team. Larry Nance Jr., a first round pick of the Los Angeles Lakers, Derek Cooke Jr., Charles Hankerson Jr. and Riley Grabau are all out of eligibility, leaving senior guard Josh Adams as the team’s lone returning starter.
Adams is the team’s lone senior, with there being six freshmen and six sophomores that he’ll be asked to lead on the court this upcoming season.
Two weeks after Inside Carolina reported that North Carolina would extend the contract of head coach Roy Williams, the school made the news official Friday morning.
Williams, who’s been the head coach at his alma mater since 2003, now has a contract that will run through the 2019-2020 season. He also received a raise in the new deal, with there also being bonuses for achievements such as his team posting an Academic Progress Rate score of 975 or higher ($75,000 bonus), reaching the NCAA tournament ($25,000 bonus) and winning a national title ($250,000).
Williams’ base salary will range from $408,169 in 2015-16 to $595,409 in 2019-20. There’s also deferred compensation ranging from $1,550,000 next year to $1,750,000 in the final year of the deal and an annual expense account of $40,000, per the school release announcing the extension.
While the new contract should help some recruiting-wise (knowing that he’ll be around for the foreseeable future), there’s still the question of how the NCAA will handle the ongoing case stemming from an academic fraud investigation. In the NCAA’s Notice of Allegations, North Carolina was accused of five Level 1 violations including lack of institutional control regarding its football and men’s and women’s basketball programs.
But even with that being the case, it was the women’s program that was on the receiving end of the most severe allegations. How the NCAA handles this case is important for both the future and for the upcoming season, as the Tar Heels are an experienced team many expect to contend for a national title.
Just over two months after leading Michigan State to its ninth Final Four appearance in program history, with seven of those trips coming under his watch, head coach Tom Izzo was rewarded with a contract extension Wednesday.
One of three coaches (and athletic director Mark Hollis) to have their deals extended, Izzo is now under contract at Michigan State through June 30, 2021. And while the Spartans have some key pieces to replace in guard Travis Trice and forward Branden Dawson, the combination of returnees and newcomers is good enough to make another deep NCAA tournament run in 2015-16.
Guards Denzel Valentine, Bryn Forbes and “Tum Tum” Nairn all return, and they also add West Virginia transfer Eron Harris on the perimeter. As for the front court, returnees such as Matt Costello, Gavin Schilling and Marvin Clark Jr. will be joined by McDonald’s All-American Deyonta Davis, who is one of three freshmen joining the program.
In addition to Davis, the Spartans add guards Matt McQuaid and Kyle Ahrens.