Kim Mulkey, the head coach of defending national champion LSU, has agreed to a 10-year contract worth $32 million that will set a new mark for the richest coaching contract in women’s college basketball, according to multiple reports.
Contract details, first reported by The Advocate of Baton Rouge, have not been made public, and the deal also still needs approval from the LSU Board of Supervisors, which is scheduled to meet and vote Friday.
The Hall of Fame coach has been at LSU for two seasons, during which she has taken a program that missed the NCAA Tournament three seasons ago and elevated it to the pinnacle of its sport.
It was her fourth national title as a head coach — the first three coming at Baylor, where she coached from 2000 to 2021. Her record at LSU in two seasons combined is 50-8, with NCAA Tournament appearances both years.
Mulkey has won 692 games over her coaching career, holding the fourth-best winning percentage (.861) among women’s college basketball coaches who have won at least 600 games. She’s also won the AP Coach of the Year award three times in her career, helping her get inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2020.
Mulkey will reportedly earn a $700,000 annual pay increase with the extension; she was previously earning $2.5 million per year on a contract that ran through the end of the 2028-29 season. Only UConn’s Geno Auriemma, who has won 11 NCAA titles, and South Carolina’s Dawn Staley, who has won two NCAA titles, have similar annual salaries. Auriemma received a five-year, $15 million extension in 2021, retroactive to 2020, and Staley earned a seven-year, $22.7 million extension that same year.
Still, Mulkey will be getting paid roughly $54 million less than the highest paid men’s college basketball coach, Kentucky’s John Calipari, who is in the midst of a 10-year, $86 million deal with just one national title to his name.
LSU will return as a national title favorite this coming season, led by unanimous first-team All-American power forward Angel Reese, SEC freshman of the year Flau’jae Johnson and two-time first-team All-ACC guard Hailey Van Lith, a graduate transfer from Louisville who led the Cardinals in scoring twice in the past three seasons.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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