John Calipari agreed Tuesday to leave Memphis and the dominant program he built and take on the challenge - and riches - of returning Kentucky to college basketball glory.
Calipari will receive an eight-year, $31.65 million deal plus incentives, according to the university, making him the highest-paid coach in college basketball. The school also will pay Memphis a $200,000 buyout.
Calipari, 50, has a career record of 445-140 in 17 seasons. He chose to leave Memphis after nine seasons of success, including a record of 137-14 over the past four years.
He spent the day considering the Wildcats' lucrative offer and calling former Kentucky coaches, including Joe B. Hall.
Hall said the informal chat centered on what it takes to survive one of college basketball's most prestigious and most scrutinized jobs. Kentucky fired Billy Gillispie last Friday after two disappointing seasons.
Calipari's deal would eclipse the $3.5 million average salary of Florida's Billy Donovan and dwarf those of Calipari's predecessors Rick Pitino, Tubby Smith and Gillispie.
UConn Rolls Into Final Four
TRENTON, N.J. - The Connecticut express is headed to St. Louis for the women's Final Four, a trip the perfect Huskies have seemed destined to make all season.
Maya Moore scored 25 points and undefeated UConn beat Arizona State 83-64 to advance to the national semifinals for the second straight season and ninth time in the past 14 years.
Renee Montgomery added 22 points for the Huskies (37-0), who will face Stanford on Sunday in a rematch of last season's national semifinal.
Danielle Orsillo scored 18 to lead Arizona State (26-9).
OKLAHOMA CITY - Courtney Paris will get the chance to back up her national championship guarantee in the Final Four.
Paris led the way with 19 points, 13 rebounds and six blocks as top-seeded Oklahoma surged ahead in the second half to beat Purdue to earn the second trip to the Final Four in school history.
The Sooners (32-4) will face Louisville, an upset winner against top-seeded Maryland, in the national semifinals in St. Louis.
Danielle Robinson scored 23 points for Oklahoma, which has made it this far for the first time since losing to Connecticut in the 2002 championship game.
Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton led sixth-seeded Purdue (25-11) with 20 points and 13 rebounds, and Lakisha Freeman scored 12 points.