From the Houston Chronicle’s John P. Lopez :
Texas A&M basketball coach Billy Gillispie will remain head coach of the basketball program he has turned into a national power, three high-ranking sources close to and within the A&M system have confirmed.
Gillispie apparently has not officially confirmed to athletic director Bill Byrne or the regents that he will accept a new contract that will pay him in the neighborhood of $2 million a year, including guarantees added to the deal that runs through 2012. But regents and athletic department officials feel confident the new deal, and construction on the new A&M basketball facility scheduled to begin Monday, are the guarantees Gillispie was pursuing.
“The fence will go up (at the construction site) and they’ll get it rolling,” one source said of the 50,000-square-foot, $20 million facility that will include practice areas for men’s and women’s basketball, offices and training areas.
After several meetings with A&M athletic director Bill Byrne, Gillispie received notice today that the A&M Board of Regents will rubber-stamp the contract and expedite the start of construction on the facility.
Gillispie has been contemplating an offer from the University of Arkansas to replace fired coach Stan Heath. If he accepts the A&M deal as expected, regents expect Gillispie to be, “a lifer.”
Though I’d be more impressed if A&M could find a way to give Acie Law the money, it’s worth noting that Gillispie’s new pact — if Lopez’ sums are correct — will make him the highest paid coach in the Big 12 (based purely on salary).