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Arizona signs Barnes to contract extension through 2025-26

March 18, 2021 GMT
Arizona head coach Adia Barnes gestures toward players during the first half of her team's NCAA college basketball game against Stanford in Stanford, Calif., Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Arizona head coach Adia Barnes gestures toward players during the first half of her team's NCAA college basketball game against Stanford in Stanford, Calif., Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Arizona head coach Adia Barnes gestures toward players during the first half of her team's NCAA college basketball game against Stanford in Stanford, Calif., Monday, Feb. 22, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona has extended women’s basketball coach Adia Barnes’ contract through the 2025-26 season.

The deal announced Thursday must be approved by the Arizona Board of Regents.

Barnes is Arizona’s all-time leading scorer and she returned to coach her alma mater in 2016. Bolstered by strong recruiting, Barnes has transformed the Wildcats into a top-10 team after nearly a decade of struggling.

Arizona was poised to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2005 last year before the season was canceled by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Wildcats won 16 games during the truncated 2020-21 season, had their highest ranking in The Associated Press poll at No. 6 and spent 13 weeks in the top 10.

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Arizona opens the NCAA Tournament on Monday against Stony Brook.

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More AP women’s basketball: https://apnews.com/Womenscollegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25