UCLA Said to be Targeting Butler Coach Brad Stevens
NCAA College Basketball
Los Angeles, CA
UCLA is said to be targeting Butler's Brad Stevens to be its new men's basketball coach.
Numerous candidates have been mentioned for the UCLA job, including those with NBA experience, but a source said that UCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero is focused on a college coach.
Earlier this week Guerrero said UCLA would "not comment on the process, the candidates, or provide status updates."
Shaka Smart of Virginia Commonwealth was also among UCLA's targets, but he said Wednesday he was returning to VCU and the school announced it was extending his contract through 2023.
Two former UCLA assistants and current head coaches -- NC State's Mark Gottfried and Washington's Lorenzo Romar -- were said by to be on the Bruins' list, according to sources.
But NC State athletic director Debbie Yow said Gottfried has a $3.75 million buyout and said the coach told her he hasn't heard from UCLA. Romar also said via text he has had no contact with UCLA.
When asked whether he had contact with UCLA about its vacancy, Stevens, 36, refused to comment on the situation via a text message exchange.
"I'm the coach at Butler," Stevens told ESPN. "As you know, my stance is to not comment on any other speculation or situation."
Asked to comment, Butler athletic director Barry Collier said they value Stevens as "an extremely important coach and staff member".
Stevens' most notable accomplishment was leading Butler to back-to-back national championship game appearances in 2010 and 2011.
His March brilliance has attracted numerous many major conference programs in the past two years such as Oregon, Wake Forest, Clemson, Missouri, Maryland, Georgia Tech and Illinois.
But Stevens chose to sign an extension with Butler through the 2021-22 season. He reportedly makes around $1 million per season.
Ben Howland, recently fired by UCLA, was making $2.3 million.
What would Brad Stevens bring to UCLA?
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