Thursday , Dec , 09 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Ohio State extends Matta; imposes postseason ban for 2004-05

=== Ohio State extends Matta; imposes postseason ban for 2004-05 ===

Columbus, OH (Sports Network) – Ohio State athletic director Andy Geiger
announced a one-year contract extension for men’s head basketball coach Thad
Matta as a direct result of the school imposing a ban on postseason play for
2004-05.

“Because we have self-imposed a ban against postseason play in 2004-05, we
have granted head coach Thad Matta a one-year contract extension,” said
Geiger. “It is intended to show our confidence and appreciation for the manner
in which he and his staff have dedicated themselves to Ohio State. The one-
year extension will add an opportunity for postseason play lost this season.

“I want to make it perfectly clear that Thad Matta and his staff had nothing
to do in any way with the activities that have led us to impose sanctions
against our program,” Geiger said. “We are very pleased with their efforts
with the Ohio State men’s basketball team since their arrival in Columbus.”

The 37-year-old Matta initially received a seven-year contract in early July.
The extension will now keep him at the school through the 2011-12 campaign.
Matta replaced Jim O’Brien, who was fired in June for a violation of NCAA
bylaws, and has guided the Buckeyes to a 5-2 record this season.

The one-year ban on NCAA and NIT postseason competition is a significant step
in the university’s ongoing investigation of the basketball program in
response to violations of NCAA rules. The infraction the school is dealing
with involves improper cash benefits given by O’Brien to a recruit who
ultimately did not come to Ohio State.

O’Brien sued the university last month, claiming the firing violated the terms
of his contract.

Matta spent three highly successful campaigns at Xavier after beginning his
head coaching career at Butler in 2000.

OHIOST