Dream’s McDonald returning to Arizona to coach under Barnes

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Atlanta Dream guard Aari McDonald is returning to Arizona to work under coach Adia Barnes.

The school announced that McDonald will serve as director of recruiting operations while continuing to fulfill her WNBA commitments. She will oversee all recruiting logistics, assist with on-campus visits, manage recruit information and social media content at Arizona.

McDonald was one of the best players in Arizona history after transferring from Washington as a sophomore. She was an All-American and the Pac-12 player of the year in 2020-21, leading the Wildcats to the national championship game, which they lost to Stanford.

McDonald broke Barnes’ single-season scoring record and had the highest career scoring average in school history before being selected by the Dream with the third overall pick of the 2021 WNBA draft.

Arkansas to open against Louisville in Maui Invitational

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LAHAINA, Hawaii — Arkansas will face Louisville in the opening round of a loaded 2022 Maui Invitational bracket.

The eight-team bracket announced for the November event will include six teams that went to the 2022 NCAA Tournament, including three that reached the Sweet 16.

Arizona faces Cincinnati in the opening round after reaching the Sweet 16 in coach Tommy Lloyd’s first season. Texas Tech, another Sweet 16 team last season, plays Creighton and San Diego State faces Ohio State in the tournament’s return to the Lahaina Civic Center on Nov. 21-23.

The 2020 tournament was held in Asheville, North Carolina, and last year’s was played in Las Vegas.

Arkansas has reached the Elite Eight the past two seasons under coach Eric Musselman.

Duke, Arizona agree to basketball series for 2023 and 2024

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DURHAM, N.C. — Duke and Arizona have agreed to a home-and-home men’s basketball series for 2023 and 2024.

The schools announced the agreement Monday. The first meeting comes in November 2023 with the Wildcats visiting the Blue Devils’ famously hostile Cameron Indoor Stadium. Duke travels west to Tucson the following November.

In statements, new Duke coach Jon Scheyer and Arizona coach Tommy Lloyd – named The Associated Press men’s college basketball national coach of the year in April after his debut season – said their teams will benefit from the marquee non-conference matchups.

The teams haven’t met since November 2013 and have played just nine times, including Duke’s win in the 2001 NCAA title game. The Wildcats lost their only trip to Cameron in February 1990, while the Blue Devils lost both trips to Arizona’s McKale Center in December 1987 and February 1991.

 

Arizona coach Tommy Lloyd agrees to 5-year extension

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TUCSON, Ariz. ⁠— Arizona basketball coach Tommy Lloyd has agreed to a five-year contract extension through 2027 following a successful first season in the desert.

The Arizona Board of Regents on Thursday approved the contract, which gives Lloyd a $1 million raise next season and includes $19 million in total compensation.

The contract increases Lloyd’s base salary from $1.9 million to $2.9 million in 2022-23. He also will receive $100,000 escalators each year after that.

Lloyd will continue to get $700,000 per year in additional duties compensation.

A former longtime assistant to Mark Few at Gonzaga, Lloyd had a successful first season at Arizona, earning Associated Press national coach of the year honors after leading the Wildcats to a 34-3 record and a trip to the Sweet 16.

Arizona won the Pac-12 Tournament and was the first team in league history to win 18 conference games. The Wildcats reached No. 3 in the AP Top 25 and were a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Arizona’s Tommy Lloyd to get 5-year contract extension

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Arizona head coach Tommy Lloyd will get a $1 million raise next season in a proposed five-year contract extension through 2027 following a successful first season in the desert.

The extension must be approved by the Arizona Board of Regents.

The new contract would increase Lloyd’s base salary from $1.9 million to $2.9 million in 2022-23. He also will receive $100,000 escalators each year after that.

Lloyd will continue to get $700,000 per year in additional duties compensation.

A former longtime assistant to Mark Few at Gonzaga, Lloyd had a successful first season at Arizona, earning Associated Press national coach of the year honors after leading the Wildcats to a 34-3 record and a trip to the Sweet 16.

Arizona won the Pac-12 Tournament and was the first team in league history to win 18 conference games. The Wildcats reached No. 3 in the AP Top 25 and were a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Arizona’s Mathurin declares for NBA draft

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Arizona sophomore Bennedict Mathurin is entering the NBA draft.

The 6-foot-6 guard is a projected lottery pick after a breakout season during his second year in Tucson. He led the Wildcats with 17.7 points per game and shot 45% from the field.

The Canadian-born Mathurin posted his decision on social media Wednesday, writing “it has always been a dream of mine to play in the NBA and I am ready to take that step forward.”

Mathurin was a big reason Arizona finished with a 33-4 record this season and earned a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats advanced to the Sweet 16 before losing to Houston 72-60.