- Andy Katz, ESPN Senior Writer
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Kent State proved it wants to be a player in the NCAA Tournament on a regular basis by signing Jim Christian to a long-term deal Wednesday.
Christian, 41, told ESPN.com that he signed a seven-year extension, worth $250,000 a year. The deal makes him one of the top-paid coaches in the Mid-American Conference, if not the top-paid coach.
Christian -- who has been a candidate at a number of schools, such as Duquesne and UMass, over the years -- took Kent State to the NCAA Tournament this season. He coached Kent State to the NIT in three previous seasons.
"This means a lot for our administration to do this," Christian said.
Kent State finished 25-9 (15-3 in the MAC). The Golden Flashes lost to Pittsburgh in the first round of the tournament.
Andy Katz is a senior writer at ESPN.com.