U of M's Raines won't follow Coach Cal to Kentucky

By Jason Miles - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Nearly two years after former U of M basketball coach John Calipari's controversial move to Kentucky, university president Shirley Raines has decided to stay put.

"After what John Calipari did for us, I think it makes a statement saying a lot for Memphis," said student Ben Borodkin
"We already lost one person to Kentucky," added student Britney Buntyn.  "We don't need to lose anymore."

Dr. Raines confirmed she declined a nomination to be a candidate for president of UK.  

"Kentucky is a great university, but so is the University of Memphis," Raines said in a statement.  "And I want to continue as president of one of America's great metropolitan research universities."

Raines actually came to Memphis from UK.  A look around campus reveals many of the improvements made in the 10 years since she arrived.

Critics have taken aim at Raines for decisions regarding athletics, including when she nixed the idea of building an on-campus stadium.

"It's kind of 50/50," said student Victoria Reynolds.  "Because there's some things she does really good on and others where I'm asking why in the world was that decision made?"

It appears as if Raines will be around for the university's centennial in 2012.

According to the most recent data from the Chronicle of Higher Education, Dr. Raines' total annual compensation package here in Memphis equals $339,496.  That is around $60,000 less than the compensation of the University of Kentucky's president.

Copyright 2011 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.