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CBSSports.com Senior Writer

Larranaga accepts offer to coach at Miami


George Mason's Jim Larranaga has agreed in principle to become the next men's basketball coach at Miami, a source told CBSSports.com on Friday.

CBSSports.com first reported early Thursday that Larranaga and Miami were in advanced discussions. George Mason officials subsequently acknowledged they had granted Miami permission to speak with Larranaga, and a deal is now in place. Larranaga coached the Patriots the past 14 seasons. The highlight of his tenure was an improbable trip to the 2006 Final Four. He also won four CAA regular-season titles.

More on 'Canes hire

Larranaga is replacing Frank Haith.

Haith left Miami earlier this month for Missouri.

On the surface this move makes little sense considering Larranaga had rejected overtures from power-conference schools before. Combine that with the fact that the core of his 27-win team was returning, and there's no obvious reason for Larranaga to leave one of the best CAA jobs for one of the worst ACC jobs ... except for money.

Larranaga was scheduled to make between $525,000 and $700,000 at George Mason next year (depending on bonuses). His deal at Miami, a source said, will be worth more than $1 million annually. That combined with what a source described as a rocky relationship with athletic director Tom O'Connor helped push this over the edge, and, the source added, it got "nasty" at the end.

Gary Parrish is a senior college basketball columnist for CBSSports.com and college basketball insider for the CBS Sports Network. The Mississippi native also hosts an award-winning radio show in Memphis. He lives in that area with his wife, two sons and two dogs.

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