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Kentucky, Calipari agree to new 7-year deal

<p>Kentucky has rewarded men's head basketball coach John Calipari with a new seven-year contract worth a total of $52.5 million plus incentives.</p>

Lexington, KY (SportsNetwork.com) - Kentucky has rewarded men's head basketball coach John Calipari with a new seven-year contract worth a total of $52.5 million plus incentives.

The new seven-year pact replaces the eight-year deal Calipari inked back in June of 2011 and will keep the 55-year-old bench boss under contract through 2021.

Calipari led Kentucky to its second national championship game in three years last season, but the Wildcats fell just short of duplicating their 2012 title run, dropping a 60-54 decision to Connecticut at AT&T Stadium back in April.

"Under Coach Cal's leadership, the most storied program in NCAA basketball has reached new heights of success and excellence," said UK president Eli Capilouto. "And that continued success, in which Coach Cal plays a critical leadership role, is a major reason why we have one of the handful of programs in the country that is financially self-sustaining and that has entered into an unprecedented partnership to fund nearly two-thirds of a more than $100 million science building dedicated to learning and research."

Since taking over at Kentucky in April 2009, Calipari has guided the Wildcats to a 152-37 overall record, four Elite Eight appearances, three Final Fours and two appearances in the national title game as well as the 2012 national championship.

"It has long been our goal over the last three-to-five years that Cal enjoy this as his final stop in coaching and that he has an opportunity to finish his career at the University of Kentucky and hopefully set standards and win championships that will be remembered for many, many years to come," UK director of athletics Mitch Barnhart said.

The Wildcats have won a pair of SEC championships and two SEC tournament titles under the guidance of Calipari, who has posted 20 straight 20-win seasons overall to move just three wins shy of becoming the 13th active Division-I coach to achieve 600 on-court victories.

"I'd like to thank Mitch (Barnhart) and Dr. Capilouto for their commitment to me, my family and the basketball staff," Calipari said. "I've said over and over that I have the best job in the country. With the continued support from our administration and the greatest, craziest fans in college basketball, we have accomplished a lot in our five quick years, but we still have lofty goals for the future."

During his five seasons at the school, Calipari has seen 17 Wildcats selected in the NBA Draft, including two No. 1 overall selections, five top-five picks and eight lottery picks.

Calipari has an overall collegiate coaching mark of 597-177 over 22 seasons with Massachusetts (1988-1996), Memphis (2000-09) and Kentucky.

Between UMass and Memphis, Calipari tested the waters of the NBA with the New Jersey Nets. He posted a record of 72-112 with one playoff appearance before being fired in his third season with the team.

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