Big Ten

Big Ten

According to someone who would know, Richard Pitino was considering leaving the Gophers this offseason.

That someone is Rick Pitino, the head basketball coach at Louisville and the father of the head basketball coach at Minnesota, and he told Jim Rome that his son was "seriously considering" taking the head-coaching gig at Alabama, which was vacated after the SEC Tournament.

Apparently the elder Pitino advised Alabama athletics director Bill Battle on the job opening — which ended up going to former NBA head coach Avery Johnson — and Richard's name was mentioned.

"I've met with the Alabama athletic director, talking about different guys for that job. Richard's name came up, and Richard was seriously considering making that move," Rick Pitino told Rome. "He called me up and said, 'You know, Dad, Alabama's a great job, but I don't deserve it.' You know what, for a 32-year-old, that's as proud I can be as a dad. He was just so humble about it. And he said, 'I haven't done enough to warrant any move or even consider any move.' He said, 'We've got a tough rebuilding job here at Minnesota, and I'm going to get it done."

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Richard Pitino has amassed a 43-28 record in two seasons helming the Gophers, including an NIT championship in 2014. Minnesota has been on the wrong side of the NCAA tournament bubble in each of those seasons.


In 2014, the Gophers finished with a 25-13 overall record and 8-10 conference record, a seventh-place ranking in the Big Ten. Last year, the Gophers were 18-15 overall and 6-12 in the Big Ten, placing 11th in the league.

It has to be comforting to Gophers fans that Pitino wants to stick around and finish what he started at Minnesota. But there's no doubt that he's drawing interest from elsewhere, too.

(h/t CollegeBasketballTalk)