Published Friday, April 22, 2016 | 7:51 a.m.
Updated Friday, April 22, 2016 | 10:12 a.m.
After a little more than an hour of public comment, discussion and lamenting about the process, Marvin Menzies officially became UNLV’s new men’s basketball coach this morning.
The Board of Regents, meeting for the second time in two weeks to approve a coach’s contract, voted in favor of Menzies’ five-year, $3.75 million deal 12-1. The only no vote was chair Rick Trachok, who votes against nearly every coaching contract.
The discussion didn’t take as long as it did for Chris Beard, who two weeks ago was approved for a five-year, $5.75 million deal. A week later, Beard left to make significantly more at Texas Tech.
Menzies, who was a UNLV assistant for one season, called this his dream job shortly after getting approval. He also said he really does want to be here, which is something that was brought up a few times throughout the day as a shot at Beard.
Menzies has a couple of assistants lined up and players may soon follow, so there should be a lot getting down inside the program now that they have a coach.
Once more, with gusto. For the second time in two weeks, the Nevada Board of Regents will meet today to discuss the contract for UNLV’s next men’s basketball coach.
On April 8, it was Chris Beard who sat through more than two hours of discussions before his five-year, $5.75 million deal was approved by a 9-4 vote. A week later, Beard left for Texas Tech, where he had spent 10 years as an assistant. And now it’s Marvin Menzies who gets the Board of Regents meeting/news conference double-header to become UNLV’s 13th full-time coach.
Menzies, a 54-year-old former Rebel assistant who has spent the past nine seasons at New Mexico State, is slated to receive a five-year, $3.7 million deal (full contract at bottom). The biggest difference in the terms of the two deals is that Menzies doesn’t have any retention bonuses built in, though he does have $250,000 (compared to Beard’s $150,000) in available competition bonuses.
The rationale there is likely that this is closer to a dream job for Menzies, who has been to five of the last seven NCAA Tournaments but hasn’t won a game, than it was for Beard, who’s more of an up-and-coming coach who bolted for his dream job in Texas.
Some of the other changes include a tweak to the ticket revenue bonus structure — an improvement, as it more accurately rewards increasing attendance than the previous format — and an even higher buyout that would have Menzies pay $2.75 million in year one and more than $1 million even in year three if he were to leave. The Rebels are slated to receive $1 million from Beard’s buyout.
If Beard was behind the rest of the country in terms of getting his off-season started, then that goes doubly so for Menzies. Once he’s official, Menzies can officially get underway bringing a host of new players and a new staff, though some of those pieces are already in place.
Multiple sources said that Menzies would bring in Providence associate head coach Andre LaFleur, as well as New Mexico State’s Brandon Mason, who was a special assistant on Menzies' staff last season. It also helps that in the time since Menzies accepted the job on Saturday, UNLV sophomore Dwayne Morgan announced he would return to the program, so the Rebels should have at least three scholarship players (Morgan, Jalen Poyser, Tyrell Green) from last year’s team.
That leaves a lot of openings, though, and filling those is the top priority once Menzies gets through what should hopefully be a shorter Board of Regents discussion this morning.