CAA championship triggers big bonuses for coach Keatts

CAA championship triggers big bonuses for coach Keatts

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A CAA tournament championship for the UNCW Seahawks brings more than prestige for head men's basketball coach Kevin Keatts. It also means extra cash.

Keatts has it spelled out in his contract.

Keatts' team is heading to the NCAA tournament for the second season in a row after beating the College of Charleston 78-69 on Monday. He secured an additional $75,000 with the win. That includes cash for the tournament championship ($25,000) and getting UNCW ranked in the top 100 of the Rating Percentage Index ($25,000). The team's national ranking is currently No. 26. That rank is secure, since there are no games left to play before Selection Sunday this weekend.

The CAA championship guarantees the Seahawks a spot in the NCAA Tournament. Keatts will get $25,000 for each game played in the tournament in addition to the $25,000 he got for winning the CAA regular season championship.

Starting this year, Keatts is also eligible for supplemental pay. If he keeps his end of the bargain and does all his radio and TV appearances, shows up for a minimum number of Seahawk Club events and stays in compliance with league and conference rules, he'll receive another $200,000.

In all, the incentives will allow Keatts to double his $300,000 annual salary this season.

An appearance in the NCAA tournament this year will also trigger a clause in the contract to extend his current deal another year through 2022.

The coach is in his third season in Wilmington and his success has led to his name being mentioned at least on social media for coaching openings across the country, including NC State and Missouri.

"It puts a great responsibility on our shoulders.  Obviously he's a great coach. He's going to do very well for us hopefully for as many years as possible. But he's the type of talent that will go far.  And so we'll do what we can do to retain him.  I want him to stay, but again he also has to weigh his various commitments and what he wants to do in his career. He's got a great future."  - UNCW Chancellor Zito Sartarelli on the hope to keep Coach Keatts in Wilmington.

Should Keatts get lured to another program, the bonus money could become buyout money. If Keatts leaves early, he's required to pay back $200,000 to UNCW per his latest contract.

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