Medved is 52-40 over his three seasons in Fort Collins
Coming off a promising season, and with another on the way, Colorado State has locked up Niko Medved for the long haul.
Colorado State has signed fourth-year head coach Niko Medved to a long-term deal that will keep him in Fort Collins through the 2026-27 season, according to a report from Jeff Goodman of Stadium.
Colorado State coach Niko Medved has signed an extension through 2027, source told @Stadium. Medved has done a terrific job in Fort Collins and has one of the top teams in the Mountain West this season.
— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanHoops) July 20, 2021
In November, Medved signed an extension through the 2025-26 season. The deal reported today would stretch that out one year further, through the 2026-27 campaign. According to a report from The Coloradoan, the annual salary for Medved in the final season of the current deal will jump from $750,000 to $775,000. Included in the agreement is a “retention bonus” of $75,000, which the contract stipulates should be paid to Medved for “results achieved by the men’s basketball program in the 2020-21 season and national interest in Medved as a potential head coach at other institutions.” The new deal also includes additional funds for hiring assistants to fill out the staff, as well as for providing assistants with incentive-based bonuses.
The terms of Medved’s contract buyout remain unchanged. If Medved breaks the contract early, he would owe 25% of the remaining base salary to Colorado State. Conversely, if the school were to fire Medved without cause prior to the expiration of the deal, the institution would owe Medved 75% of the remaining base salary.
For now, though, neither side appears eager to end the relationship.
The extension comes on the heels of back-to-back 20-win seasons for Medved at Colorado State. The Rams finished second in the Mountain West last year, and though the team narrowly missed the NCAA Tournament, CSU did reach the NIT semifinals. After inheriting a program in disarray, with former skipper Larry Eustachy resigning during the 2017-18 season following an internal investigation by the school into his conduct, Medved has quickly turned things around for the Rams.
Medved’s first season was bumpy, with the team posting a dismal 12-20 record, but once the Minneapolis native had more time to put his stamp on the program, the success followed close behind. He has excelled in the recruiting department, most notably bringing in Isaiah Stevens and David Roddy, both of whom were instant stars under Medved. This past offseason, the Rams managed to flip the commitment of Division II All-American Chandler Jacobs, who had originally chosen Texas Tech.
The Rams could enter the season as a fringe Top 25 team thanks to the dynamic duo of Stevens and Roddy, which is all the more reason for CSU athletic director Joe Parker to lock up his rising star. Medved’s name was floated as a possibility for the opening left at Minnesota by now-head coach of New Mexico, Richard Pitino. Medved is an alumnus of the university, and started his career as a student manager under longtime Gophers coach Clem Haskins.
Medved got his first head coaching gig at Division III Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn. After two seasons there, he spent seven more as an assistant at Furman before returning to his alma mater to be an assistant for the Gophers. However, when Tim Miles was hired at CSU, he plucked up Niko Medved and brought him onto his first staff in Fort Collins.
After six seasons on the Rams’ bench, including consecutive NCAA Tournament trips in 2012 and 2013, Medved was hired as the head coach at Furman ahead of 2013-14 season. He took a Paladins team that was 7-24 the season before he gained control and eventually turned the program into a 20-game winner. He was then hired at Drake for the 2017-18 season, coincidentally inheriting another 7-24 team. In his lone season in Des Moines, Medved righted the ship, leading the Bulldogs to a .500 record and a third-place finish in the Missouri Valley Conference.
Those prior coaching stops were a clear foreshadowing of the success Medved would later have turning around CSU basketball. Now, with a contract extension keeping him in Fort Collins for the foreseeable future, Medved has a chance to turn Colorado State into a perennial power in the Mountain West.
(Note: This article has been edited to include details of Medved’s new deal, as reported by The Coloradoan.)
Andrew Dieckhoff is a USBWA member covering college basketball for Mountain West Wire of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group and Heat Check CBB. He is also the creator of The DPI Gradebook presented by Heat Check CBB. Andy currently resides in Portland, Oregon.