University of Washington

Yahoo reports Romar to return, but UW says no decision reached

A University of Washington spokesperson said it is “absolutely untrue that any decision has been reached” regarding the future of men’s basketball coach Lorenzo Romar, refuting a Yahoo report indicating Romar would return as coach next season.

Romar and the Huskies recently completed the worst conference season in the history of the 18-game schedule, going 2-16 and riding a 12-game losing streak into this week’s Pac-12 tournament in Las Vegas. UW is about to complete its sixth consecutive season without an NCAA tournament appearance, leading to widespread speculation that the school might fire Romar after 15 seasons.

Pat Forde of Yahoo reported that UW is unwilling to pay Romar’s $3.2 million buyout, and will retain him as coach. UW is set to add a touted five-player recruiting class that includes 6-foot-9 forward Michael Porter Jr., considered by some to be the top high school prospect in the country. Porter’s father, Michael Porter Sr., is an assistant coach for the Huskies, meaning Porter Jr. likely would not want to play for the Huskies if Romar were fired.

But a UW spokesperson said such a decision has not been made, and “we are in the same place as we were yesterday, which is planning to thoroughly evaluate all aspects of the program at the conclusion of the season.”

Now in his 15th season as head coach, Romar has led the Huskies to a 298-195 record. His teams made the NCAA tournament in six of his first nine seasons, last qualifying in 2010-11.

UW (9-21, 2-16 in Pac-12) faces USC (23-8, 10-8) on Wednesday in the first round of the Pac-12 tournament in Las Vegas.

Christian Caple: 253-597-8437, @ChristianCaple