Butch Jones agrees to extension

Cincinnati Bearcats coach Butch Jones said Monday he had agreed to a contract extension that would keep him at the school through the 2017 season.

The contract still must be approved by the school's board of trustees, which is set to meet Jan. 24. That is considered to be a mere formality.

Jones, who led Cincinnati to a share of the Big East title in his second season with the Bearcats, had been approached by North Carolina, Illinois and UCLA but turned away their overtures.

"I believe in what we're building," Jones said after practice, as his team prepared to play Vanderbilt in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl on Dec. 31. "I think there's so many great things to building a really successful football program and not just a successful team. We have great practice facilities now. We have very good facilities. We're in a conference that we can be extremely competitive in. We have a great fan base. We've got a great place to attract the top-caliber student-athletes to."

Cincinnati has lost successful coaches in the past, including Mark Dantonio and Brian Kelly, so making a long-term commitment to Jones only helps when it comes to building for the future.

Andrea Adelson covers Big East football for ESPN.com.