South Carolina Gamecocks men's basketball coach Frank Martin has done a spectacular job in his fourth season on the job. After three straight losing seasons, the program is a three-seed in the upcoming SEC Tournament and, barring a surprise, is set to make its first NCAA Tournament appearance in twelve years. The university is ready to reward him as a result, specifically with a four-year contract that will keep him in Columbia until the 2021-2022 season, according to a report from The State's David Cloninger.
Martin's original contract is set to expire after the 2017-18 season. Back in January, athletics director Ray Tanner hinted at re-upping Martin, especially considering the team's vast improvement as compared to recent years. One of the key things we've seen is Martin's ability to develop players - namely Michael Carrera and the Lithuanian duo of Mindaugas Kacinas and Laimonas Chatkevicius. As Tanner said, the "momentum" the program has right now looks like it will continue for a few years, and given the head coach's ability to recruit and develop players, there's no reason to think otherwise.
It's important to note that nothing is finalized at this point in time. The contract still must be approved by the board of trustees, and most importantly, it still needs to be signed by Martin. There's nothing preventing him from testing the waters and seeing what else is out there. As Cloninger mentioned, there's an open post at UNLV (doubtful that Todd Simon will have the interim tag removed after this season) and a possible one at Memphis (although Josh Pastner's buyout, coupled with Memphis mulling a move from the AAC to the Big 12, might mean the school is sticking with their man despite a disappointing season). There's still that pesky Rick Pitino-to-UNLV rumor that won't go away; if (IF) he does leave Louisville (he's not leaving), Louisville's got more than enough cash to lure Martin away from Columbia.
By all accounts, it seems Frank Martin's happy at South Carolina. Is this contract offer enough to keep him here? We'll see.