By ADAM ZAGORIA
UConn and Pittsburgh officials both reached out and spoke with Rhode Island coach Dan Hurley on Monday, a source with direct knowledge of the situation told ZAGSBLOG.
Both schools asked Rhode Island AD Thorr Bjorn for permission to speak with Hurley, who is considering both UConn and Pitt, as well as remaining at Rhode Island, the source said. Hurley and Bjorn are expected to speak on Tuesday.
A report that UConn is close to signing Hurley is inaccurate, the source said, and no decision is imminent. It could come within a “couple of days,” the source said.
Tom Crean, who ended up taking the Georgia job, former Ohio State coach Thad Matta and South Carolina coach Frank Martin have also been linked to the UConn job, but Hurley has been perceived as the No. 1 option all along and sources said Hurley is intrigued by the UConn “brand.” The school has won four NCAA championships since 1999; during that same span, the Pac-12 has won zero.
“I know he’s their No. 1 one target,” a second source said of Hurley.
Both UConn and Pitt would presumably offer him more money than he currently makes.
Former UConn coach Kevin Ollie made $3.2 million last season, although sources said UConn is closer to offering in the low two-million-dollar range for its next coach.
In May Hurley agreed to a one-year extension through 2023-24. His base salary is $300,000, and he made $1 million this year.
“Listen, I could give a crap about who’s got an opening or anywhere, I haven’t thought about it for a second,” Hurley said following his team’s 87-62 loss to Duke on Saturday at PPG Paints Arena. “I could care less about any other school in the country that’s looking for a coach or talks about me in social media. I could give two craps about that. My heart, my mind is with this program and these players that just lost a brutal game after having an amazing last couple seasons.”