Hall of Fame men’s college basketball coach John Calipari is finalizing a deal to leave Kentucky for Arkansas, according to multiple reports.

He has led the Wildcats to seven Elite Eights, four Final Fours and the 2012 national championship. 

ESPN was the first to report the news.

Calipari, 65, is 410-123 over 15 seasons in Lexington. He was under contract through the 2028-29 season but will not owe the program a buyout for leaving early. He would have been owed $33 million if he was fired by the university. 

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Former Arkansas coach Eric Musselman left for the same role at Southern California this week. 

Calipari, a three-time Naismith College Coach of the Year, has come under scrutiny in recent years. Kentucky lost to No. 14 seed Oakland in the first round of the 2024 NCAA Tournament and has failed to reach the postseason’s second weekend since 2019. The Wildcats’ last SEC title was in 2020. 


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