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Archive for Saturday, November 22, 2003

MU gives Pinkel raise, extension

November 22, 2003

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Missouri coach Gary Pinkel has agreed to a contract extension that will keep him in Columbia through 2008 and give him a raise of nearly $60,000 per year, athletic director Mike Alden announced Friday.

Pinkel, 51, has two regular-season games remaining in his third year as Tigers' coach. He is 16-17 since arriving, but has guided Missouri to a 7-3 record this season, making the Tigers eligible for a bowl game for the first time since 1998.

"We came here with a vision of building a first-class national program, and while this is still a work in progress, I do believe we are making strides," Pinkel said. "A commitment like this validates all the work you put in, and is very critical to the building process."

Final details of the contract were not announced, but Pinkel's base salary would be increased from $192,000 to $250,000 under the deal. Pinkel's previous contract included incentives that allowed him to earn around $1 million a year.

Alden said there was plenty of evidence Pinkel was "the right guy for the job," including progress on the field, successful recruiting and record amounts of television exposure.

"Gary Pinkel is well on his way to building a top-notch program, and I'm pleased that we are able to show that our institution believes in the work that he and his staff are doing," Alden said.

Missouri can win the Big 12 North with victories Saturday at No. 19 Kansas State, and Nov. 29 against Iowa State. If that happens, the Tigers would face No. 1 Oklahoma in the Big 12 Conference championship game Dec. 6 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.

The Tigers have been ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 three times this season, but fell out of the polls after losses to Kansas University, Oklahoma and Colorado. Pinkel also led Missouri to a 41-24 win Oct. 11 against Nebraska, the Tigers' first win against the Cornhuskers since 1978.

Pinkel's original five-year contract was extended in August 2002 to run through the 2007 season. He has a career record of 89-54-3 in 13 seasons as a head coach.

In 10 years at Toledo, Pinkel was 73-37-3 and won one Mid-American Conference championship.

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