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Leonard Hamilton gets 5-year contract extension with Seminoles

Florida State hopes hoops coach will stay at school 'as long as he wishes'
Florida State Seminoles head coach Leonard Hamilton smiles during game at North Carolina Tar Heels in 2021
Posted at 9:28 PM, Mar 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-01 21:28:11-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Florida State has a reputation for being a place where college coaches can have longevity and finish out their careers before retiring. It seems Leonard Hamilton is on his way to joining that list.

The school announced Monday that it has agreed to a five-year contract extension with Hamilton that will keep him at the helm of the men's basketball program through the 2024-25 season.

"Coach Hamilton has done so much for this basketball program and this university that it is hard to express in words," FSU athletic director David Coburn said in a statement. "What he does with his young men, both on and off the court, is truly remarkable. I know both the president and I regard him as a university treasure, and he is just now getting the national recognition he has deserved for so long. He embodies all the qualities that make a great leader, and we are proud and thrilled to have him as our coach as long as he wishes."

The three-time Atlantic Coast Conference coach of the year is the all-time wins leader in program history.

His No. 11 Seminoles (14-4, 10-3 ACC) are currently in first place in the ACC standings and are the conference's highest-ranked team.

Hamilton said in a statement that he was "grateful for the support" from FSU.

"The extension of my contract means an awful lot to our basketball family and those coaches who have been with me throughout my career at Florida State," Hamilton said.

Hamilton is in his 19th season at FSU, having led the Seminoles to a pair of ACC titles and 14 postseason appearances since his hiring in 2002.

Leonard Hamilton all smiles after Florida State Seminoles win 2020 ACC regular-season championship
Florida State's head coach Leonard Hamilton celebrates with his players after their school's first-ever ACC regular-season championship after a game against Boston College, Saturday, March 7 2020, in Tallahassee, Fla. Florida State won 80-62.

"While I am proud of everything we have accomplished, there is still room for improvement, and we have so much more to accomplish," Hamilton said.

The longest-tenured basketball coach in school history would be nearing 77 if he honors the length of the contract. Already 72, it's unlikely that Hamilton would seek another opportunity elsewhere, so the extension all but guarantees he'll finish his career at FSU, joining other legendary coaches like football's Bobby Bowden (34 years) and baseball's Mike Martin (40 years).

"I would like to thank our students, our fans in Tallahassee and across the country for the support they have given us and to let them know that the best of Florida State Basketball is still to come," Hamilton said.