Texas athletic director Steve Patterson is inclined to keep men’s basketball coach Rick Barnes for another season, a source told the American-Statesman late Thursday.
However, Patterson would like Barnes make “changes,” although the source would not specify if that meant changing assistant coaches, the offense or something else entirely. If Barnes is unwilling to make any changes, then Patterson is prepared to fire Barnes altogether, the source said.
“Steve wants changes to be made. He wants to see improvement,” said the source, who was familiar with the situation. “If we don’t get those changes, (Patterson) will have to make a change.”
Barnes did not return a phone message left by the American-Statesman on Thursday.
Patterson and Barnes have met face-to-face twice in recent days, the source said. It’s unclear how those meetings have gone, though.
Barnes, the winningest coach in Texas men’s basketball history, currently has a contract that runs through March 2019. He was given an extension after last season, although it was widely considered to be cosmetic for recruiting purposes. Barnes’ base package was $2.55 million this season.
The timing of Patterson and Barnes’ meetings come at an interesting time, as far as Barnes’ buyout is concerned. If Patterson chose to fire Barnes, the coach is due $1.75 million. However, that number drops to $1.5 million after April 1, according to the terms of Barnes’ contract obtained by the American-Statesman.
Read more about this story in Friday’s American-Statesman.
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