Arizona extends contract of head coach Sean Miller

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The Arizona Wildcats have extended the contract of head coach Sean Miller through the 2016-17 season, the school announced in a statement.

The Arizona Board of Regents approved the one-year extension Friday.

“Our program has made tremendous strides under [Miller’s] leadership and the future looks exceptionally bright,” Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne said in a release. “This just re-emphasizes our commitment to Coach Miller and the University of Arizona men’s basketball program.”

Under Miller’s watch, the Wildcats have a 69-35 record over the past three seasons, including a Pac-10 regular-season title and Elite Eight berth in 2011. The performance won him the Pac-10 Coach of the Year award.

In 2011-12, the Wildcats missed the NCAA tournament and lost in the first round of the NIT to Bucknell, 65-54.

But Miller will be reloading with his 2012 recruiting class, which is arguably the best in the Pac-12 and Top 3 in the country.

Seven-footer Kaleb Tarczewski leads the new Wildcat frontcourt, which also includes Top 20 prospects Brandon Ashley and Grant Jarrett.

Guard Gabe York joins sophomore Nick Johnson in the backcourt, along with graduate guard Mark Lyons, the Xavier transfer who will be able to play right away.

“During the last three years we have been able to lay a strong foundation for future success both in the classroom and on the basketball court,” Miller said in a statement. “I look forward to the challenges that lie ahead as we work toward building our program into a national contender once again.”

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

After turning down Southern Miss, Kermit Davis signs extension with Middle Tennessee

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Just one day after it was reported that Kermit Davis was not interested in the job at Southern Miss, it becomes clear exactly why.

Middle Tennessee has announced that Davis has signed a five-year extension with the school, keeping him in town through the 2016-17 season.

“My family and I truly love Middle Tennessee State University and the city of Murfreesboro,” said Davis in a statement. “We have a great culture of players, coaches, and support staff that eagerly awaits the start of the 2012-13 campaign.

“A tremendous nucleus of players return from our 27-win, championship team, along with two quality recruits which makes the upcoming season very exciting.”

The Blue Raiders won the Sun Belt regular-season championship with a conference record of 14-2, but lost out on an NCAA tournament bid to Western Kentucky.

They went on to compete in the NIT, where they advanced to the quarterfinals, before losing to Minnesota.

Davis’s recruiting class in 2012 is headed by 6-1 point guard Trantel Knight, who averaged 8.2 points and 3.9 rebounds as a freshman at Middle Georgia, before transferring to Chipola Junior College (Fl.).

“I am appreciative of the opportunity to lead Middle Tennessee basketball into what we think will be one of the most exciting times in program history,” Davis said in closing.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_