What if I told you a program in the midst of a scandal just rewarded their coach with a contract extension? Auburn borrowed a page from Louisville’s playbook and extended Bruce Pearl’s contract through the 2022-23 season despite the FBI’s investigation into the Tigers’ basketball program.
Pearl led Auburn to a 26-8 record and SEC regular season title last season amid the investigation, which prevented two of its biggest stars, Austin Wiley and Danjel Purifoy, from playing and led to the firing of associate head coach Chuck Person.
“It was a historic season for Auburn basketball and one that was matched by excellence in the classroom as well,” Auburn athletic director Allen Greene said in a release. “Coach Pearl shares my commitment to ensuring the holistic development of our student-athletes and adhering to the mission of Auburn University as an institution of higher learning.”
“Our coaches and student-athletes believe in Auburn and we love it,” Pearl said. “We came here to work hard, make a positive difference on the campus and in the community and bring credibility and championships back to Auburn basketball. I’m grateful to President Dr. Steven Leath and Director of Athletics Allen Greene for their commitment and support. My family is blessed to be a part of the Auburn Family.”
Back when the FBI’s report came out last fall, many believed Pearl wouldn’t even make it through the season, especially when he refused to cooperate with Auburn’s internal investigation. Pearl turned in an incredible coaching job and continues to kill it on the recruiting trail, so he deserves to keep his job, but doubling down and offering him an extension? Winning really does cure all ails.