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Gophers hire Richard Pitino to replace Tubby Smith
FOX 9 News has confirmed that the University of Minnesota has picked Richard Pitino, the son of Louisville coach Rick Pitino, to take over for basketball coach Tubby Smith.
By 6 p.m. on Wednesday, the university had confirmed the acquisition in a brief release that read in full:
Richard Pitino has been selected ast he finalist for the position of University of Minnesota men's head basketball coach. Pitino and the university have reached an understanding in principle on the key terms of an agreement, according to Director of Athletics Norwood Teague.
The terms of the agreement will be finalized later this week. Details of the agreement and further information regarding a scheduled press conference will be forthcoming.
Earlier in the day, person with knowledge of the discussions told the Associated Press that Pitino reached a verbal agreement with Minnesota on Wednesday. The person requested anonymity because the deal had not been officially announced.
In his lone season at Florida International, Pitino led the Panthers to an 18-14 record, the school's first winning season in 13 years. He will turn 31 in September, fitting the profile of the young, up-and-comer that Minnesota athletic director Norwood Teague has preferred to hire in the past.
Smith was fired last week after six seasons at Minnesota. He was hired at Texas Tech on Monday.