The URI Foundation, in partnership with the University and the Department of Athletics, is supporting and providing funding for this effort as part of its mission to advance the University and its goals.
The new contract will add an additional year to Hurley’s current pact and will run through the 2021-22 season. Hurley’s total compensation package will be increased to a guaranteed $1 million per year by the 2017-18 season. Hurley’s current compensation package of $630,000 is among the bottom four lowest in the 14-team Atlantic 10 Conference. Rhode Island would become the eighth school in the conference to offer its head men’s basketball coach a total compensation package of at least seven figures.
“Consistently successful athletic programs provide a level of exposure, awareness and interest in the marketplace to promote and attract additional resources to important academic, scholarly and service programs of the University,” said URI President David M. Dooley. “We are pleased with Dan Hurley’s performance, and want to ensure that we are able to build on the successes of this past season.”
Hurley completed his third year at Rhode Island with a 23-10 overall record and a share of second place in the Atlantic 10 Conference, finishing with a 13-5 mark in league play. On Feb. 28, Rhody reached the overall 20-win mark for the first time in five years. It also marked the first 20-win regular season in six years.
For his efforts, the 42-year old coach was named the 2014-15 United States Basketball Writers Association District I Coach of the Year. The Rams advanced to the second round of the 2015 National Invitation Tournament and was one of just three schools nationally to show an overall win improvement of at least nine games and a win improvement of at least eight games in conference play.
“We are excited about the direction and future of our basketball program,” said Thorr Bjorn, Director of Athletics. “This year’s success is building pride on campus, with our alumni, and across the state. Coach Hurley has laid the foundation for success and now this funding will keep up the momentum going forward. “
With a starting five that included two freshmen and two sophomores, the University of Rhode Island ranked among the youngest teams at the NCAA Division I level, as measured by KenPom.com. Sophomores E.C. Matthews and Hassan Martin each earned a spot on the Atlantic 10’s All-Conference Second Team, while freshman Jared Terrell was selected to the league’s All-Rookie team.
“I am proud to continue to lead and build the men’s basketball program at the University of Rhode Island,” Hurley said. “I would like to thank the entire University community – especially Dr. Dooley, Thorr Bjorn, and the URI Foundation – for their proactive leadership and commitment. It is an exciting time for our program moving forward.”
“We understand the importance and impact of building a championship caliber men’s basketball program within the state and beyond with all of our dedicated alumni, friends, and fans. Rhode Island is a great state to live, raise a family, and work. My family and I are proud to call Rhode Island home,” Hurley added.
Since taking over the Rams in the 2012-13 season, Hurley has guided the program to a +15 win margin, going from eight wins in his first year to 23 this past season. It is the third-best win margin nationally among all Division I teams over the past two years.
Regarding the Foundation’s involvement in investing in Hurley and URI’s basketball program, Executive Board Chair Lorne Adrain commented, “It is our belief that this support will elevate URI’s competitiveness and increase the odds of a consistently higher level of performance in basketball. This commitment is part of a broad strategy of the URI Foundation to partner with the University on important strategic initiatives.“