VCU basketball coach Shaka Smart has turned down Illinois, sources said Wednesday afternoon.

CHAMPAIGN -- VCU basketball coach Shaka Smart has turned down Illinois, sources said Wednesday afternoon.

Smart was apparently the school's first choice, but he's not interested in making the move from the mid-major school to Illinois, who fired Bruce Weber after nine seasons.

According to reports, Smart rejected an offer of $2.5 million a year.

The next question is where Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas heads now.

Illinois trustees pushed for an African-American hire, but Thomas already has a diverse pool of candidates.

John Supinie can be reached at Johnsupinie@aol.com. Follow him on Twitter at @JohnSupinie.