Rick Pitino no longer plans to retire in 2017

Pitino now says he'll coach as long as he's feeling healthy and vital. (US Presswire)

Rick Pitino plans to sign a contract extension with Louisville and continue to coach as long as his health allows, according to an interview he conducted with CBSSports.com's Jeff Goodman on SiriusXM Radio late Wednesday.

"I'm probably going to sign an extension somewhere down the road," Pitino said. "I'm gonna stay in it as long as I'm healthy. ... I'm gonna stay in it as long as I can."

This development contradicts what Pitino said as recently as last year when he told a group of reporters that his contract runs out in 2017 and that he's "not coaching anymore after that."

So what to make of this new position?

It's possible Pitino's public change of plans is the result of him realizing he's still capable of constructing national-title contenders in his 60s, proof being that he currently has a national-title contender at the age of 60. On the other (cynical) hand, it's possible his public change of plans is just what he thinks he must say now given that other coaches have been using the penciled-in retirement date against Louisville on the recruiting trail.

Either way, the point is this: Rick Pitino said Rick Pitino isn't going anywhere.

That's good news for Louisville fans.

Now they just need to root for him to remain healthy.

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Gary Parrish is an award-winning college basketball columnist and television analyst for CBS Sports who also hosts the highest-rated afternoon drive radio show in Memphis, where he lives with his wife... Full Bio

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