Alabama basketball coach Nate Oats signs new contract, athletic director says

Alabama basketball coach Nate Oats has signed a new contract, the school’s athletic director said.

Alabama AD Greg Byrne said in a social media post on Friday that Oats’ contract will go before the school’s Board of Trustees next week.

“We are excited about the success of our men’s basketball program and Nate’s continued commitment to the University,” Byrne said in his post. “We look forward to him leading our men’s basketball program for many years to come.”

The 19th-ranked Crimson Tide (21-11) lost 102-88 to sixth-seeded Florida on Friday night in the Southeastern Conference Tournament quarterfinals.

That made talking about Alabama’s commitment to him and the men’s program tougher for Oats even as he said he appreciated the support to help the Tide compete to be a Top 10 program year in and year out. Oats also said it helps take his name out of speculation for any other job openings.

“Obviously, we’d like to be playing (Saturday), playing for an SEC Tournament championship, but we’re in the NCAA Tournament,” Oats said. “You know the 13 years before we got here, they’d only played two. This will be four straight for us, so we’ve got the program headed in the right direction.”

Alabama, the No. 3 seed, came into the conference tournament in Nashville having won the SEC regular-season and tournament championships two of the past three years under Oats. The coach thought his Crimson Tide might’ve won the regular-season title again this year if a concussion hadn’t sidelined Latrell Wrightsell Jr. part of the season.

Alabama hired Oats in 2019 from Buffalo, where he helped turn the Bulls into an NCAA Tournament team and conference champion. He replaced Avery Johnson, who led the Tide to one NCAA tourney in four seasons.

Under Oats, Alabama has advanced to the NCAA Tournament three years in a row with a fourth trip assured despite Friday night’s SEC Tournament loss.


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