April 1, 2009

Oregon keeping men’s hoops coach

The University of Oregon is retaining men's basketball Coach Ernie Kent, despite a dismal 8-23 record this season.

The Register-Guard reported Wednesday that a major change was made in Kent's coaching staff, with the hiring of Arizona interim head Coach Mike Dunlap, a defensive wizard.

The 51-year-old Dunlap replaces Mark Hudson, who had been part of Kent's staff since 1997 at Saint Mary's.

The newspaper reported Dunlap will receive a two-year contract at $400,000 annually, with incentives tied to Oregon playing in the NCAA tournament, and a $300,000 signing bonus.

In 12 seasons at the Pac-10 school, Kent has compiled a 219-157 record, but the Beavers' 23 losses this season, including 14 in a row, were the second-most in school history.

The newspaper added if Kent had been fired, the school would have had to pay $1.1 million for a buyout of the contract under terms of a new deal announced last summer.