UConn’s Dan Hurley turns down Lakers coaching job

After making a strong push for UConn’s Dan Hurley, the Lakers will continue their coaching search with other candidates.

Hurley on Monday decided to pass on the Lakers’ offer to make him the franchise’s next head coach according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Hurley told Wojnarowski on Sunday that he left his Friday meeting with Lakers VP and GM Rob Pelinka and owner Jeanie Buss “extremely impressed” after they made a “compelling case” and presented a “compelling vision” for him to become the organization’s next coach.

But the 51-year-old New Jersey native will return to UConn, where he has a chance to make college basketball history after winning back-to-back NCAA men’s national titles with the Huskies.

ESPN reported that the Lakers offered Hurley a six-year, $70 million contract that would have made him one of the NBA’s highest paid coaches.

The Lakers have interviewed several candidates besides Hurley since hiring Darvin Ham on May 3, including former NBA player and current broadcaster JJ Redick and New Orleans assistant James Borrego.

Borrego was reportedly the only candidate to have two in-person meetings with the Lakers brass.

The Lakers had in-person meetings with other coaching candidates, including Denver assistant David Adelman and Minnesota assistant Micah Nori, but they made a fullcourt press for Hurley to take over for Ham before he decided to stay with the Huskies.

Hurley, the reigning Naismith Coach of the Year, has a 292–163 all-time college coaching record including stops at Rhode Island (2012-18) and Wagner (2010-12) after first becoming a head coach when he was at the helm of Saint Benedict’s Preparatory School (Newark, N.J.) from 2001–2010.

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UConn has gone 141-58 with Hurley since 2018, including winning the Big East’s regular-season and tournament championships and the NCAA Men’s Tournament in 2023 and ’24.

Hurley’s Huskies, Billy Donovan’s Florida Gators (2006-07) and Mike Krzyzewski’s Duke Blue Devils (1991-92) are the lone programs to win back-to-back men’s national championships in the past 50 years.

Hurley will lead a Huskies team that’s looking to become the first program since UCLA to three-peat when Coach John Wooden’s Bruins won seven consecutive national titles from 1967-73.

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