One of the first tasks Gene Taylor will have as Kansas State athletic director will be discussing a contract extension with basketball coach Bruce Weber.
University president Richard Myers said Monday he is confident in Weber, who has two years remaining on a contract that pays him $2.15 million, and thinks it’s time to negotiate an extension.
“I think we will,” Myers said at Taylor’s introductory news conference. “I don’t think we have yet. That is in the works.”
Taylor was hired as K-State’s athletic director on Friday and formally introduced on Monday. He will start his new job May 1. Weber’s contract will be an early priority.
“That is something that will land on Gene’s desk pretty darn quick,” Myers said.
Weber just finished his fifth season with the Wildcats. During his time in Manhattan, he has led K-State to three NCAA Tournaments and a shared Big 12 championship. His record is 100-68.
This past season, K-State won 21 games and lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to Cincinnati after beating Wake Forest in a play-in game.
Weber’s job status has been a hot topic for K-State fans. He got off to a solid start, winning 47 games in his first two seasons, but missed the postseason the following two years before bouncing back this season. Myers liked what he saw.
“We are happy that Bruce is back, that Coach Weber is back,” Myers said. “We’ll see, but we are confident.”
While serving as interim athletic director, Laird Veatch gave Weber a vote of confidence in late March by telling the Manhattan Mercury he would return as basketball coach.
Myers said those comments were made with his approval.
“John Currie and I started having discussions in the season,” Myers said, “and then Laird and I, after the last game, we got together one more time and said, ‘How do we work it? What do we think?’ We were both of like minds.”
He is now hopeful Taylor and Weber can agree on new contract terms, of which Myers has no specifics in mind.
“Don’t know yet,” Myers said. “I wouldn’t comment.”
Kellis Robinett: @kellisrobinett