June 23, 2024

Report: Dan Hurley Received ‘Strong’ UConn Contract Offer amid Lakers HC Rumors | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - APRIL 08: Head coach Dan Hurley of the Connecticut Huskies reacts in the first half against the Purdue Boilermakers during the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament National Championship game at State Farm Stadium on April 08, 2024 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The University of Connecticut is reportedly making a bid to convince head men’s basketball coach Dan Hurley to stay put rather than making the leap to the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers.

According to The Field of 68’s Jeff Goodman, UConn has made a “strong offer” to Hurley, although it “obviously can’t match or even get close to Lakers.”

Goodman added that if Hurley signs a new contract with UConn, he would be one of the three highest-paid coaches in college basketball along with Kansas’ Bill Self and Arkansas’ John Calipari.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Thursday that the Lakers were preparing a “massive, long-term contract offer” to Hurley in an effort to make him their next head coach.

L.A. had been speaking to several other candidates, and while it was widely believed that former NBA guard JJ Redick was the front-runner for the job, Hurley has emerged as the Lakers’ preferred choice.

Per Wojnarowski, Hurley “has been at the forefront of the Lakers’ search from the beginning of the process,” and discussions between the two sides are expected to “escalate” in the coming days.

Despite the allure of joining one of the most iconic franchises in NBA history and having the chance to coach LeBron James and Anthony Davis, Hurley is not a lock to go to the Lakers. Goodman reported that it’s a “50-50” proposition whether he stays at UConn.

Following successful stints as the head coach at Wagner and Rhode Island, Hurley was hired by UConn in 2018. He has led the Huskies to four consecutive NCAA tournament appearances and back-to-back national championships.

UConn is the first program to win two straight national titles since Florida in 2006 and 2007. If Hurley were to return, he would have a chance to make the Huskies the first three-peat national champs since UCLA won seven titles in a row from 1967 to 1973.

Aside from the money and the excitement of a new challenge, the biggest factor in favor of Hurley going from UConn to the Lakers may be the state of the Huskies roster.

Four of UConn’s five leading scorers from last season’s 37-3 team have entered the 2024 NBA draft in Donovan Clingan, Cam Spencer, Tristen Newton and Stephon Castle.

That isn’t to say that Hurley couldn’t keep UConn in contention with his incoming recruiting class, transfers and holdovers, but that amount of turnover would not be easy to overcome.

Winning a championship in L.A. would also be a challenge. But given that James and Davis are just one season removed from leading the Lakers to the Western Conference Finals, the pieces are in place for Hurley to potentially step in and win an NBA championship right away.