Bruce Weber Receives Contract Extension

Champaign, Ill. - The University of Illinois Board of Trustees approved today a two-year contract extension and raise for Illini head men's basketball coach Bruce Weber. Weber, who was hired by Director of Athletics Ron Guenther on April 30, 2003, received a one-year extension to his initial five-year contract in 2004 after leading Illinois to a record of 26-7, an outright Big Ten championship and the NCAA Sweet 16 in his first season.

Weber became the first coach in Big Ten history to win consecutive outright conference championships in his first two seasons by directing last year's Illini squad to another Big Ten title. Illinois tied the all-time NCAA record for victories in a season en route to its 37-2 record, and advanced to the NCAA Championship game for the first time in school history. The Illini claimed the Big Ten Tournament title as well as the regular season crown, and won the NCAA Chicago Regional to advance to the Final Four for the first time since 1989. Illinois was the national story of the 2004-05 basketball season, flirting with an undefeated season after winning its first 29 games, and earning the No. 1 ranking in both polls for 15 consecutive weeks.

"I am very pleased with the job Bruce Weber has done with our basketball program. His performance has been exceptional," Guenther said. "Additionally, he and Megan have been excellent representatives for our institution. I am very pleased that we can extend the contract."

Weber has received a two-year extension, which will keep him on the Illini sidelines through the 2010-11 season. In addition, a number of upgrades will be made to the program to keep it among the nation's elite.

"Of course I am pleased to receive a contract that has long-term security, but I'm even more excited about the other commitments that have been made to our program," Weber said. "We're going to be able to reward our assistant coaches, which is something that is very important to me. They have played such a huge role in our success, and this should allow for stability in those positions. We're also going to upgrade our video resources and make some necessary upgrades to the Ubben Basketball Complex, which will keep it among the best practices facilities in the nation."

"I am happy to be part of a wonderful program here and to work with Ron and an administration that is very supportive of our needs," Weber added. "It has been a memorable first two years, and our staff will continue working hard to ensure the future success of the basketball program here at the University of Illinois."

Illini Inquirer Top Stories