After years of pondering retirement and suggesting it would arrive sooner rather than later, Louisville coach Rick Pitino appears to have decided, as he put it at a Tuesday news conference, “I don't know if I can live without basketball.”
Pitino, 60, agreed to a contract extension at Louisville that runs through the 2021-22 season. Pitino will be just short of his 70th birthday when the term expires.
Only last December, Pitino had pronounced that wouldn’t coach past 2017, when his previous contract term was to end. “When you're 59, you're realistic that you don't have a whole lot of years left," Pitino said then. “My contract's going to run out in 2017. I'm not coaching anymore after that."
His attitude changed when he began to consider how coaching friends such as Jim O’Brien retired and then un-retired and also when he evaluated how much the game meant to him.