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Trapasso, Donovan agree on new deal

Hawaii baseball coach Mike Trapasso agreed on a guaranteed two-year contract with UH athletic director Jim Donovan yesterday.

The deal could be as long as four years based on the Rainbows advancing to the NCAA tournament within the first two.

Donovan called it a "two plus one plus one" deal, where an NCAA tournament berth in either 2011 or 2012 would guarantee him a third year. A second postseason berth in the first three seasons would automatically extend him for a fourth.

"We expect to be in the postseason every year," Donovan said yesterday. "Basically (the contract) gives him the incentive to make the postseason and tells recruits that he’ll be here for at least two of the three years before they’re junior draft-eligible, and even longer if they make the postseason."

Trapasso, whose just-completed contract paid him a base salary of $135,000, wouldn’t disclose monetary details, but is excited to hit the road recruiting with negotiations behind him.

"There’s no question this helps recruiting," said Trapasso, who leaves for the mainland today. "Players want to play for a coach that they know will be around."

This is the most stability Trapasso has had at Hawaii since he began the final year of his second four-year contract in 2009. He accepted a one-year extension in 2010, and wasn’t assured he’d receive a new offer until the Rainbows won the Western Athletic Conference tournament less than two weeks ago.

Trapasso received a $10,000 bonus following Hawaii’s appearance in the NCAA tournament, in which it lost to No. 1 overall seed Arizona State on Sunday in the Tempe regional final.

"I’ve felt for some time that I’m very fortunate to be at Hawaii and to be coaching this group of kids," Trapasso said. "I’m very grateful to Jim and to chancellor (Virginia) Hinshaw and the University of Hawaii for trusting the current baseball program for the near future."

Trapasso is 280-244 overall in nine seasons and has guided UH to the NCAA tournament twice. The Rainbows hadn’t won a WAC tournament title since 1992.

Hawaii graduated seven seniors and is expected to lose at least three juniors who will sign with professional teams following the 2010 draft.

UH finished the season winning 12 of its final 17 games. The Rainbows won at least 35 games for just the second time under Trapasso, and were 30th in this week’s Collegiate Baseball poll to finish ranked in a major poll for the first time since 1992.


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