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Kruger’s raise guarantees UNLV coach $5.2 million

A proposed five-year contract for UNLV basketball coach Lon Kruger includes a substantial raise and will guarantee him $5.2 million.

Kruger figured to get rewarded after leading the team to a 30-7 record this past season. The Rebels reached the NCAA Tournament’s Sweet 16 for the first time in 16 years.

UNLV athletic director Mike Hamrick reached an agreement with Kruger on a two-year contract extension in early May. The new five-year deal is significantly different from the coach’s previous contract, which had three years remaining, and must be approved by the Board of Regents at a meeting June 21 in Reno.

Kruger earned $824,500 for the 2006-07 season. That total accounted for his base salary ($165,000), media appearance fees ($300,000) and public appearances ($284,500). He also received a $25,000 bonus for qualifying for the NCAA Tournament, and was paid an additional $25,000 for each postseason victory over Georgia Tech and Wisconsin.

Under his old contract, Kruger was to be paid $809,500 plus incentives for the 2007-08 season. The first year of the new deal raises his guaranteed salary to $975,000.

Kruger’s base salary for next season will be $195,000 and he is set to receive $400,000 for media appearances, $330,000 for public appearances and $50,000 for a shoe and apparel deal.

The contract increases Kruger’s guaranteed salary to $1 million in the second year, $1.025 million in the third year, $1.075 million in the fourth year and $1.125 million in the final year.

The same NCAA Tournament bonuses apply to the new contract. Kruger also receives the use of two automobiles and a golf country club membership.

A completion bonus of $325,000 will be paid to Kruger if he is still coach at the end of the 2011-12 season. If he leaves UNLV for another college or professional coaching job, a buyout provision exists for $500,000.

Kruger, 64-34 in three years with the Rebels, is not among the highest-paid coaches in college basketball.

By comparison, the seven-year contract for new Kentucky coach Billy Gillispie is guaranteed for $2.3 million in the first year and increases by $75,000 annually.

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