Dixon has a buyout “a little north” of $8 million, according to sources, that UCLA would like reduced significantly to go forward with the hiring of Dixon.
That remains a stumbling block at this point and could be the deciding factor in Dixon staying put at his alma mater.
TCU brass is “all very much on the same page” as far as its stance on Dixon’s buyout, according to a source.
A decision, whether Dixon bolts for UCLA or stays at TCU, is expected to be resolved by the end of Friday with the Final Four starting on Saturday. Dixon was on TCU’s campus early Friday.
If TCU doesn’t budge, or UCLA refuses to pay the buyout, it could make for an awkward situation for Dixon and TCU going forward. But TCU does not want Dixon to leave after he’s turned a once dormant program relevant and in the NCAA Tournament mix in three seasons.
TCU wants to make it hard for coaches to leave, too, which is why it puts significant buyouts in contracts such as Dixon’s. Dixon agreed to a contract extension through the 2023-24 season with TCU last off-season.
But UCLA is a coveted job for Dixon, who grew up in the North Hollywood area. The Bruins are a blue-blood program that has more national championships (11) than any program in college basketball history.
It’d also put Dixon closer to his parents, who aren’t able to travel to as many games. His parents did not make the trip to New York City for this week’s NIT semifinals at Madison Square Garden.
For now, Dixon is TCU’s coach and very well could be going forward because of the buyout language in his contract.
Dixon avoided the UCLA subject during a season-ending meeting with his team on Thursday, and has stated multiple times this week he does not talk about other jobs.
Dixon is 68-41 in three seasons at TCU, leading the program to the NIT championship in his first season. Dixon and the Frogs snapped a 20-year NCAA Tournament drought last season, and were among the top “snubs” from the Big Dance this season.