By all accounts, you would think Rick Pitino wouldn’t be able to find another job in college basketball. Instead, he’s reportedly in the midst of negotiations for a lifetime contract with his current team.

Pitino, who got caught up in more scandals and accusations at Louisville than one can keep track of, returned to college basketball in 2020 with the Iona Gaels. A much smaller school than the ones he’d previously worked at, including Providence, Kentucky, and Lousiville, Iona was seen by many as a stepping stone for Pitino to work his way back up into the good graces of another powerhouse.

However, after an initial season saw the Gaels win the MAAC championship and get into the NCAA Tournament, and the subsequent season sees them at 18-3 and currently undefeated in their conference, it’s clear that Pitino is making things happen at the New Rochelle, New York school. Pitino who currently has 800 NCAA victories, told reporters recently that he’d like to still be at Iona when he wins his 1,000th.

And that is apparently the plan as, per Adam Zagoria, Pitino and the school are in negotiations on a lifetime contract.

With Pitino, you never quite know where you stand, no matter what your contract says. It’s entirely possible that the grind of college basketball had made him want to settle down in an environment like Iona where he can put together solid teams without the drama that comes with a major powerhouse. Or, let’s face it, he’ll keep winning there until an amazing offer comes along at, say, St. John’s. We won’t know until we know, really.

And that’s driving a lot of the reactions to the report in the college basketball world.

Pitino certainly has a good thing going at Iona, and perhaps he’ll stick around for a while, but don’t expect the speculation about his next move to stop just because of a new contract. This is Rick Pitino we’re talking about.

[Adam Zagoria]

About Sean Keeley

Sean Keeley is the creator of the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and author of 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and many other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle. Send tips/comments/complaints to sean@thecomeback.com.