Illinois Finishes Self's Contract

Thursday, July 20th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) — The University of Illinois completed a five-year contract with new basketball coach Bill Self on Thursday, a deal worth at least $825,000 a year.

Meeting Thursday in Chicago, the school's board of trustees made official a deal reached by Self and athletic director Ron Guenther more than a month ago.

The trustees voted 9-0, without comment, to ratify the contract, spokeswoman Susan Trebach said. The votes were just a formality. Guenther selected Self as the coach June 8 with President James Stukel's blessing.

Self, who was 74-27 in three seasons at Tulsa, will be paid a base salary of $175,000 per year. The contract also pays Self $400,000 for television and radio appearances, and $250,000 for education and promotional duties.

In addition to that $825,000 package, Self will get to keep 90 percent of the profits from UI's summer basketball camp. The university did not disclose any estimate of that amount.

Self replaced Lon Kruger, who quit to become head coach of the NBA's Atlanta Hawks. Kruger was earning about $750,000 a year at Illinois in a deal similar to Self's.

University officials acknowledged early in the search for Kruger's replacement that Illinois would pay more to get a sitting head coach with a winning record, which is what Guenther said he wanted.

Guenther had the freedom to pay what the coaching market required as long as he had extra money within the athletics budget to cover it, university spokesman Bill Murphy said.

Not all Big Ten schools release full details of coaches' compensation, making comparisons difficult. However, published reports and public records indicate Self will be among the league's best paid.

Michigan State's Tom Izzo made $1.1 million last season, in part because of bonuses for winning the national championship. Indiana's Bob Knight and Purdue's Gene Keady get base salaries similar to Self's, but media reports say outside income boosts their compensation packages closer to $1 million.

Self could not be reached Thursday because he is on the road evaluating recruits. Guenther also could not be reached to comment because he is out of his office all week.