Across the Commonwealth 8/9

08/09/2011 02:00 PM

Rick Pitino’s contract extension through 2017 has been approved by the U of L Athletics Association.
There are two schools of thought regarding Pitino’s reported extension, which will increase his annual salary from $3 million to $3.9 million for the final four seasons of the contract (2013-2017).
You could certainly argue that Pitino hasn’t necessarily earned an extension with his on-the-court performance. The Cards have been to just one Final Four and made it past the first weekend of the NCAA Tournament just three times in Pitino’s 10 years, and the ‘Ville suffered an embarrassing first round loss to Morehead State in the Big Dance last season.
But if you’re talking strictly dollars and sense, a case could be made for Pitino’s pay raise. The Cardinals continue to be one of the nation’s most profitable programs and that doesn’t figure to change anytime soon with the sparkling KFC Yum Center.
Pitino can quiet the critics who suggest he’s overpaid by leading the Cards to a national championship, or at least another Final Four, in the next 2-3 seasons. If he fails to do that, though, the debate will remain.

Here’s a look at the other top stories in the Kentuckiana sports world:
-The Louisville women’s basketball team visits the reservation where star player Shoni Schimmel grew up.

-Here’s the TV schedule for U of L basketball’s trip to the Bahamas this week.

-Western Kentucky football is expecting big things from receiver Marcus Vasquez this season.

-But when the Toppers open with UK in Nashville on Sept. 1, they will be without perhaps its best defensive lineman

-The KHSAA has announced game times for the football state championships

-At UK, Jordan Aumiller is just one of several players competing for the starting tight end job

-The Herald-Leader’s Mark Story looks at UK freshman safety Ashely Lowery

-Kentuckysportsradio.com and Bleed Blue Kentucky football writer Aaron Cordero looks at Morgan Newton and the Wildcat QB’s

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