Update on the bottom of the page
The ongoing saga surrounding Tennessee head basketball coach Rick Barnes and UCLA continues to twist and turn.
According to Russell Biven of WBIR, Tennessee is “about to run a full court press” in order to keep Barnes as the Vols’ head coach. Biven was one of many to report late Sunday night that Barnes and Tennessee Athletics Director Phillip Fulmer were meeting on campus to discuss the ongoing situation.
The University of Tennessee is working hard to keep Coach Barnes.
They are about to run a full court press. Stay with @wbir
— Russell Biven (@WBIRrussell) April 8, 2019
That report was followed up by another report from long-time Knoxville report Jimmy Hyams.
Per Hyams, an announcement about Barnes’ status one way or the other could come “within an hour.” Hyams also added some context about the reports stating that UCLA spoke with Barnes, adding that the initial meeting between the two happened on Thursday, April 4th while Fulmer was in Tampa Bay interviewing candidates for the Lady Vols’ head coaching position.
Don’t be surprised if announcement is made about Rick Barnes’ status within an hour. Source told me Barnes first spoke to UCLA on Thursday while Phillip Fulmer was in Tampa Bay at women’s Final Four, interviewing candidates.
— Jimmy Hyams (@JimmyHyams) April 8, 2019
Barnes is making $3.25 million annually at Tennessee after signing a contract extension last offseason, and his buyout is expected to be $5 million. UCLA balked at paying $8 million to buy out the remainder of Jamie Dixon’s contract at TCU, and that’s how the Bruins got to his situation.
According to a source from The Read Optional’s Trey Wallace, UCLA will have “no problem” paying Barnes’ buyout, which is $3 million less than what Dixon’s was.
From a PAC12 source: “UCLA will have no problem paying Rick’s buyout”
Today will be a whirlwind, and it’s only 12:30ET. Fulmer has work to do this afternoon if Barnes is sticking around. What a crazy 24 hours
— Trey Wallace (@TreyWallace_) April 8, 2019
If you missed any info that came out late Sunday night or early Monday morning, we have a full update for you here.
We will continue to update as more information becomes available.
UPDATE (4-8-19, 12:52 PM): According to an updated report from WBIR, an offer has been made to Barnes from Tennessee, and he’s currently mulling it over.
Per WBIR’s report, Tennessee made an offer to Barnes and he is now “prayerfully considering his options.” WBIR also adds that a decision is expected today, Monday April 8th.