According to a report from ESPN’s Chris Low, Tennessee Vols head coach Rick Barnes is torn between UT and UCLA, after receiving a lucrative offer from the Bruins.

Low reported on Monday afternoon that UCLA offered Barnes a deal worth $5 million a year, plus bonuses and incentives. Tennessee has reportedly offered Barnes, who was extended by UT last fall, a new deal to stay in Knoxville.

Based on the tone of Low’s report, it would appear that Barnes’ decision isn’t going to come down to money (given the cost of living and state income tax laws in California, $5 million wouldn’t be a “huge” pay raise for Barnes).

Barnes is trying to decide whether he wants to remain in East Tennessee, where he’s a perfect fit, or if he wants to end his career by resurrecting one of the most storied programs in college basketball history.

Tennessee is likely losing a lot of talent heading into next season, so either job will be a challenge for the soon-to-be 65 year old coach.

I’d expect a resolution, one way or the other, to come rather quickly.

Nothing is ever easy on Rocky Top.

Featured image via Randy Sartin/USA Today Sports
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