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Kentucky athletic director C.M. Newton, whose work as chairman of the NCAA basketball tournament made him one of the nation's best-known college sports administrators, said he will retire next summer.

The 69-year-old Newton had indicated for the last six months that he planned to leave when his four-year contract expires.

Hired in 1989 during an NCAA investigation of recruiting violations in the Kentucky basketball program, Newton's tenure has included a return to basketball dominance by the Wildcats, including national titles in 1996 and 1998, and the rise of Kentucky's long-downtrodden football program.

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