Advertisement

Cincinnati basketball coach Mick Cronin bolting for UCLA job

By
Alex Butler
Men's basketball coach Mick Cronin took the head coaching job at UCLA on Tuesday, despite being under contract with the University of Cincinnati through the 2022-2023 season. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Men's basketball coach Mick Cronin took the head coaching job at UCLA on Tuesday, despite being under contract with the University of Cincinnati through the 2022-2023 season. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

April 9 (UPI) -- Cincinnati basketball coach Mick Cronin is leaving the program to take the job at UCLA.

The Bruins announced the hire Tuesday. He joins the Bruins on a six-year, $24 million contract.

Advertisement

Cronin, 47, posted a 293-147 record in 13 seasons at Cincinnati. The former Murray State coach led the Bearcats to the NCAA tournament in each of his last nine seasons. The Bearcats reached the Sweet 16 in 2012.

Cincinnati posted a 28-7 record in 2018, before losing to Iowa in the first round of the tournament. The Bruins (17-16) failed to reach the tournament after losing in the first four round in 2018. UCLA lost to Kentucky in the regional semifinal in 2017.

RELATED Rick Barnes to turn down UCLA offer, will remain with Tennessee Volunteers

"I am incredibly humbled and honored to become the head coach at UCLA," Cronin said in a UCLA news release.

"I'm especially grateful to chancellor [Gene] Block and to [Bruins athletic director] Dan Guerrero for this opportunity to join the Bruin family. UCLA is a very special place with a strong tradition of excellence. To be able to join such a world-class institution is truly a privilege, and I can't wait to get started in Westwood."

Advertisement

Cronin will be formally introduced to the media Wednesday in Westwood, Calif. UCLA fired coach Steve Alford on New Year's Eve after eight seasons.

RELATED Tennessee's Rick Barnes a candidate for UCLA coaching gig

"Mick Cronin is a fierce competitor, and I'm excited to welcome him to Westwood," Guerrero said. "Mick has built a fantastic program at Cincinnati, backed by integrity and discipline, and he has instilled an undeniable toughness in his student-athletes. I am confident he will build this program the right way and lead UCLA basketball back to national prominence."

Cronin informed Cincinnati athletic director Mike Bohn of his intention to leave the program at noon Tuesday.

"We are thankful to Mick for his work over the past 13 seasons, elevating his alma mater into one of the elite programs in the nation," Bohn said. "We wish him well at UCLA. We will begin moving forward immediately on a national search to find our next head coach."

RELATED March Madness: John Calipari agrees to lifetime contract at Kentucky

Cronin signed a seven-year contract extension with the Bearcats in 2014, paying him $2.2 million annually. He was engaged in talks with the school for another extension before leaving for the UCLA job. Cincinnati approved a two-year extension for Cronin in 2016, taking his contract through the 2022-2023 season.

Advertisement

Latest Headlines