While Mark Pope has been the head basketball coach at Kentucky for over a month, his official contract details were just released.

On Tuesday, the university disclosed the contract information for Pope and his coaching staff. Pope’s contract, which had been previously reported as a five-year deal, will run from April 12, 2024, to March 31, 2029.

Over the duration of his contract, Pope will earn $27.5 million, with a $5 million salary that increases by $250,000 each season.

Despite being a part of the ‘blue blood’ club in college basketball, Kentucky has failed to advance beyond the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament since the 2018-19 season. After the 2020 NCAA Tournament was canceled due to COVID-19, Kentucky missed the 2021 NCAA Tournament and suffered first-round exits in two of the last three seasons.


University of Kentucky’s new men’s basketball coach Mark Pope speaks about the future of Kentucky men’s basketball during his introductory press conference to thousands of fans in Rupp Arena on Sunday, April 14, 2024.

As a result, Pope will receive a $250,000 bonus for each Sweet Sixteen appearance.

However, Pope’s ambitions go beyond bonuses. He emphasized upon taking the job that “hanging a banner” at Kentucky should be the expectation every season.

“The University of Kentucky is the pinnacle of coaching in college basketball,” Pope said. “It’s the definition of a blueblood program where hanging a banner is the expectation every year.”

Other incentives for Pope include: $500,000 for a National Championship, $250,000 for a Final Four appearance, $100,000 for a regular-season SEC Championship, and $50,000 for an SEC Tournament title.

Kentucky is coming off a 23-10 record and a first-round upset loss in the NCAA Tournament to Oakland. Pope led BYU to the NCAA Tournament this past year after a 23-11 season.

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