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'I can't think of a better place to call home': Adia Barnes signs new contract to coach Cats
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'I can't think of a better place to call home': Adia Barnes signs new contract to coach Cats

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University of Arizona vs Idaho State (copy)

Arizona head coach Adia Barnes arranges the Wildcats' offense against Idaho State in the fist half of their first-round game of the WNIT at McKale Center, Thursday, March 21, 2019.

Arizona women’s basketball coach Adia Barnes thanked her bosses “from the bottom of my heart” on Friday, after the UA announced that she has signed a contract that will keep her in Tucson through the 2024 season.

The Arizona Board of Regents approved Barnes’ contract on Thursday at their meeting in Flagstaff after considerable debate over her academic bonuses. Barnes will make a base of $400,000 per year, plus retention bonuses of an extra $25,000 per year starting in 2020-21. The academic incentives were removed from her contract, giving athletic director Dave Heeke a chance to rework them and submit a new addendum to the contract when the board meets again in August.

Barnes, arguably the greatest player in UA history, returned to her alma mater in April 2016. Her team won the WNIT this spring, beating Northwestern in front of a sold-out crowd in McKale Center.

“It has been a blessing to lead this program, and I am truly grateful for the support from our leadership and administration,” Barnes said in a news release. "Our community in Tucson and the University of Arizona is special, and I can’t think of a better place to call home. The rise of our program has been powered by an amazing group of student-athletes who represent what this program stands for on and off the court. I can’t wait to continue to coach these young women and take the program to another level.”

Barnes thanked Heeke and UA president Robert C. Robbins for “trusting me to lead this amazing program and for always being our biggest fans,” and credited current and former UA administrators Erika Barnes, Suzy Mason and Rocky LaRose for their support dating back decades.

Compiled in part from a news release. 

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