Utah Valley men’s basketball coach Mark Pope has signed a six-year contract extension with the Wolverines.

Pope’s previous deal would have expired in 2020, but this extension will keep him in Orem through the 2023-24 season.

“This is a really special day for me because my whole heart is here at Utah Valley University,” Pope said in a news release Thursday.

The Wolverines have been a program on the rise under Pope. UVU is coming off a 23-win season, the best in school history, and a second straight appearance in the College Basketball Invitational. Pope also played a key role in raising funds for the university’s basketball center, which was completed in 2017.

“We’ve got some real momentum going at Utah Valley University and in our athletic department because of what men’s basketball has been able to accomplish these past three years,” UVU athletics director Vince Otoupal said in the release.

“Coach still had two years remaining on his contract but we wanted to be aggressive because he’s the guy that we believe will continue to move us forward. We’re taking every step that is necessary to take our athletic department to the next level.”