Report: Groce nearing deal with Illinois

Ohio coach John Groce instructs his squad during its NCAA Tournament Regional semifinal game against North Carolina Friday in St. Louis. Groce is reportedly nearing a deal with the University of Illinois. (Brien Vincent | Staff Photographer)

A Chicago newspaper is reporting that the University of Illinois’ hiring of Ohio men’s basketball coach John Groce is “imminent.”

The Chicago Tribune reports that disagreements about a potential contract have delayed the negotiations but that the parties are nearing a finalized deal.

The report states that Groce has been asking for a contract of $11 million over eight years while Illinois has been offering a five- or six-year deal worth $1.2 million a year. Disagreements about the salaries for assistant coaches also held up the negotiations, the paper reports.

If Groce leaves Ohio, he will owe the school $200,000, according to his contract. 

Ohio director of Media Relations Drew Wiseman said he could neither confirm nor deny the details listed in the Tribune story.

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