KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee coach Rick Barnes believes he’d be coaching UCLA’s men’s basketball team right now if buyout negotiations hadn’t broken down.
Barnes’ contract required Tennessee to receive $5 million if he had left for another job before Monday. The buyout is slightly less now. Barnes spoke with UCLA officials, but a deal could not be worked out. Tennessee announced on April 8 that Barnes was staying in Knoxville.
Barnes said at a Tuesday news conference that “when you get down to a situation like that, it has to make sense from a financial standpoint.” He added that “the bottom line is we just couldn’t work it out with the buyout.”