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Nebraska AD: Hoiberg to return next season, will get pay cut

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: FEB 22 Nebraska at Northwestern

EVANSTON, IL - FEBRUARY 22: Nebraska Cornhuskers head coach Fred Hoiberg looks on during a college basketball game between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Northwestern Wildcats on February 22, 2022, at Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, IL. (Photo by Chris Kohley/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

LINCOLN, Neb. - Nebraska coach Fred Hoiberg will return for a fourth season but has agreed to a pay cut and a reduced buyout if he’s fired after next season, athletic director Trev Alberts said Thursday night.

Hoiberg is 21-65 overall and 6-49 in the Big Ten, with the next game at home against No. 25 Iowa on Friday. The Huskers (7-20, 1-15) have had three straight 20-loss seasons.

“Over the past few weeks, I have had several productive meetings with Coach Hoiberg, and we agree the results of our team are not acceptable,” Alberts said. “No one is more disappointed or frustrated than Fred Hoiberg. I have known Fred for a long time and watched him build and lead successful teams.”

Hoiberg, who is under contract through the 2026-27 season, will have his salary reduced from $3.5 million to $3.25 million and he will forfeit a $500,000 retention bonus that would be due if he were still coaching coach on March 31, 2024. His contract buyout was reduced from $18.5 million to $11 million.

“I appreciate the confidence that Trev Alberts and University leadership has shown in me,” Hoiberg said in a statement. “Our results on the court have not been what anyone would have hoped, but I am more committed than ever to building a successful basketball program at Nebraska.”

Hoiberg was one of the splash hires of the 2019 cycle. He was so popular as a player and coach at Iowa State that he’s still known as “The Mayor” in Ames, Iowa. His bad run as Chicago Bulls coach didn’t take away from the excitement over his hiring at Nebraska.

The program, however, is now mired in its worst three-year stretch.

“As I said when I was hired three years ago, it is an honor to be the men’s basketball coach at the University of Nebraska, and I am excited to continue to lead the Husker program,” Hoiberg said. “This has always been a special place to me and my family, and we have grown to love the Lincoln community in our time here.”

The conditions for Hoiberg’s retention are similar to those for Nebraska football coach Scott Frost, who is 15-27 in four years. Frost had his contract restructured late last season. His 2022 salary was cut from $5 million to $4 million, and his buyout of $15 million was reduced to $7.5 million.