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Article updated: 5/29/2013 11:54 AM

U of I trustees OK extension, raise for Groce

By

University trustees have signed off on a $200,000 annual raise and contract extension for Illinois basketball coach John Groce.

Trustees also voted Wednesday to give Illinois-Chicago men's head coach Howard Moore a three-year contract extension, and they approved the naming-rights deal to change Assembly Hall in Champaign to the State Farm Center.

Groce's salary will increase to $1.2 million a year. His contract now runs through April 2018. In Groce's first season at Illinois, the Illini finished 23-13 and defeated Colorado in the NCAA Tournament before falling to Miami.

Moore's contract was extended through March 2018. His $333,900 salary will increase by $15,000 in 2014. Under Moore the Flames finished 18-16 last season.

Under the naming-rights deal, Bloomington-based State Farm Insurance Co. will pay the university $60 million over 30 years. The change comes as the university begins a $165 million renovation project. Luxury boxes, air conditioning and other features will be added to the 50-year-old arena.

Illinois' arena is the second in the Big Ten to sell its naming rights. Pinnacle Bank purchased the naming rights to the University of Nebraska's arena for $11.2 million over 25 years.

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