Report: UVa, Bennett Talking Extension

Virginia director of athletics Craig Littlepage released a statement Tuesday afternoon, praising basketball coach Tony Bennett and his staff for the job they've done in five seasons in Charlottesville, and thanking fans for their support of this year's NCAA Tournament run.

But Littlepage did not address Tuesday's report from the Washington Post that says Bennett and the school are negotiating a contract extension for the coach.

Bennett's fifth season at UVa ended with last Friday's 61-59 loss to Michigan State in the Sweet 16 at Madison Square Garden. The Cavaliers finished the year 30-7 -- matching the school record for wins in a season -- and won both the ACC's regular season and conference tournament titles.

"Coach Bennett and his staff have done a great job implementing a plan for success over the course of their five seasons at UVa," Littlepage said in his statement. "The 2013-14 Virginia men’s basketball team embodied the characteristics and style of play Tony envisioned when he became our head coach. We will always remember this team for its many notable accomplishments, including winning Virginia’s first ACC championship since 1976."

Bennett is currently under contract through the 2018-19 season at $1.7 million per year. According to the Washington Post report, Bennett is currently negotiating "a lucrative contract extension" for himself, plus raises and new contracts for his coaching staff.

Bennett signed a five-year contract when he took the UVa job in 2009, and then a five-year extension following the Cavaliers' 2012 NCAA Tournament appearance. That 2012 extension did not include a pay raise.


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