University of Maryland men's basketball coach Gary Williams yesterday agreed to a new seven-year contract, the school announced.
Although specific terms were not released, Williams will earn a minimum of $1.5 million annually from his guaranteed compensation and summer camps and could earn close to $2 million annually if he achieves all of the performance- and academic-based incentives in the deal, according to sources familiar with the situation.
Also yesterday, Maryland was ranked No. 13 in the preseason Associated Press media poll. The defending national champion Terrapins are No. 15 in the ESPN/USA Today coaches poll.
After leading Maryland to its first national championship last season, Williams and his representatives negotiated a new contract that is one year longer than his previous deal and includes significant financial gains, according to a statement released by the school.
Williams can continue to earn incentives for players' graduation rates and also by winning the ACC championship and advancing in the NCAA tournament. Williams also will continue to receive other benefits, such as game tickets, and he retained his marketing rights, another potentially lucrative source of income.
"I appreciate what the school has done," said Williams, who will have the second-highest compensation among ACC basketball coaches, after Duke's Mike Krzyzewski. "The school understands what's going on, where the market is."
Williams, 57, has a record of 274-143 in his 13 seasons at Maryland and is 481-271 in 24 seasons as a college coach. Although he will be 64 when the contract expires on May 31, 2009, Williams said he can see himself fulfilling the length of the agreement.
"If my health is good, yeah," Williams said. "Hopefully I'll know. I think that's young enough. If you can stay healthy, you can still do things.
"I still feel very energized about coaching. I wanted practice to start to see how I felt after last year. This summer was crazy. . . . When practice started, you got that old feeling again, this is where you're supposed to be on October 15. It's a great feeling."
Arizona was No. 1 in the preseason AP poll for the third time in six years. Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas -- all of the Big 12 -- were next, followed by Pittsburgh at No. 5 and Duke at No. 6.
Meantime, Maryland is an unlikely destination for former local high school standout James White, who has announced he is transferring from Florida.
White, who averaged 6.1 points and 2.9 rebounds last season as a Gators freshman, has withdrawn from school and is seeking to transfer for the second semester, according to his father, James.
Although Maryland was one of White's final choices coming out of high school, the Terrapins are expected to sign five recruits to national letters-of-intent on Wednesday and would not have a scholarship available for White, who might be considering George Washington.