Horn signs four-year, $135,000 contract

Mai Hoang

Darrin Horn was at Western for four years before graduating in 1995.

Now he’s banking on at least four more years at Western as the head coach for the current generation of Hilltoppers.

Horn signed a four-year contract Wednesday afternoon that will pay him $135,000 a year for his first head coaching position.

There is also an option to extend the contract another year to March 31, 2008.

“I’m very pleased with it, and very excited to have the contract out of the way,” he said.

It is a similar contract to former coach Dennis Felton’s when he came to Western five years ago, athletic director Wood Selig said.

Felton was paid a total of $140,000 in his first contract with Western.

Selig said a final copy was given to Horn on Tuesday. There was not much dispute over the terms of the contract, he said.

“We talked on the phone before he accepted the job about most of the details of the contract,” Selig said. “It wasn’t like there was a whole lot of negotiation.”

Horn has had a rough copy of the contract for several months, but he could not remember when he first got that draft.

Horn said he has been busy since he accepted the job in April.

He spent several months traveling on recruiting trips. In May, he was in Milwaukee for the birth of his son, Walker.

That schedule has delayed him from reading the 15-page contract in much detail.

One player, sophomore guard Danny Rumph, said signing the contract was probably not as much of a priority for Horn as the team was.

“He was already focused on the team and all his players,” he said. “We were going hard practicing and working out with him since he got here.”

Selig said the contract is only one of the reasons the job is attractive.

“I say the overall contract and the stability and the direction of the program and the state-of-the-art facility make this particular deal a much better deal than when this job was offered five years ago,” Selig said.

Regardless, Horn said he’s here for more than just a paycheck.

“I obviously didn’t come to Western Kentucky because of a contract,” Horn said. “I came because it was home and it was an opportunity fulfill a dream.”

Reach Mai Hoang at [email protected]