Rick Barnes, officially let go by Texas after 17 seasons on Sunday, is expected to be named the next basketball coach at Tennessee, two sources close to the situation told Monday.

The sources said Rick Barnes' hire at Tennessee is likely to be announced by the end of the week.

Messages left for Barnes and for Tennessee athletic director Dave Hart by HornsDigest Monday weren't immediately returned.

Barnes, who at Texas went to a Final Four (2003), two Elite Eights (2006, 2008) and two Sweet Sixteens (2002, 2004), would replace Donnie Tyndall, who was fired after one season coaching the Vols.

Tyndall is being investigated by the NCAA for alleged rules violations while Tyndall was coaching at Southern Mississippi. And Hart has said it was "highly likely" that Tyndall would face "significant penalties."

Barnes' move to Tennessee would come at a time when the SEC is upgrading its basketball coaching.

Auburn gave Bruce Pearl a six-year, $14.7 million deal last season. Mississippi State has hired former UCLA coach Ben Howland for $8.2 million over four years.

And Alabama is apparently prepared to offer more than $3 million per season to Wichita State's Gregg Marshall, who was also expected to be a top candidate to replace Barnes at Texas. Although, Marshall appears to be behind VCU's Shaka Smart and Villanova's Jay Wright on AD Steve Patterson's list, sources told HD Monday night.

In Knoxville, Barnes would give Tennessee a Final Four coach with 600 wins who has been to the NCAA Tournament 16 of the past 17 years.

Said one source close to the situation, "Rick Barnes is going to be just fine (after being let go by Texas)."

Barnes even hinted something could come together quickly for himself in terms of a landing spot when asked if he wanted to keep coaching on Sunday.

"Will I coach again? Yeah. Probably quicker than you think," Barnes said.

Tennessee basketball stagnated from 2001-05 under Buzz Peterson, missing the NCAA Tournament all four years he was coach in Knoxville.

But the program enjoyed a resurgence under Bruce Pearl, going to the NCAA Tournament every year he was coach from 2006-11, including an Elite Eight in 2011.

But Pearl was fired in late March 2011 after lying to NCAA investigators about recruiting violations.

Cuonzo Martin replaced Pearl and took the Vols to the NCAA Tournament in his third season (2014), reaching the Sweet 16. Martin resigned and took the job at Cal. Martin was replaced by Tyndall.


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