Mike Krzyzewski (search) is staying at Duke, ending talks with the Los Angeles Lakers (search) about becoming their coach.

The school said Monday that Krzyzewski had informed the Lakers of his decision. An afternoon news conference was scheduled on campus.

Krzyzewski, who has led Duke to three national titles in his 24 years at the school, met with Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak on Thursday to discuss the team's coaching vacancy, one of the NBA's showcase positions. Even Lakers star Kobe Bryant (search) was reportedly involved in trying to persuade Coach K to take the job.

The Lakers had no immediate comment Monday on the decision by Krzyzewski, who signed a lifetime contract with Duke three years ago.

The Lakers have been searching for a new coach since June 18, when coach Phil Jackson (search) stepped down three days after an NBA Finals loss to Detroit.

The Los Angeles Times and ESPN reported that Krzyzewski was offered the job, but Lakers officials had refused comment.

Kenny Randolph, father of Duke forward Shavlik Randolph, said Krzyzewski told him in a phone call late Monday morning that he would stay with the Blue Devils (search).

"He just basically said the thing sort of ballooned out of proportion and that he appreciated our friendship and confidence, and that he'd remain at Duke," Randolph said. "And that's all that had to be said.

"I told him, 'Gosh, coach. I've got chill bumps.' And he said, 'I do, too."'

The 57-year-old Krzyzewski has a 621-181 record at Duke, leading the Blue Devils to championships in 1991, 1992 and 2001. Under Krzyzewski, the Blue Devils have 10 Final Four appearances, eight Atlantic Coast Conference tournament championships and 10 conference regular-season titles.

His Duke teams have been ranked No. 1 in 12 seasons, including each of the last seven. With his team's success on and off the court, Krzyzewski -- like John Wooden did at UCLA and Dean Smith at North Carolina -- has become synonymous with Duke basketball.

Current Tar Heels coach Roy Williams said he wasn't surprised by Krzyzewski's decision.

"Mike has accomplished so much at Duke, and his roots are so deep that I thought it would be difficult for him to leave," Williams said. "I'm sure he felt it was in the best interest for him and his family. I know it is great for college basketball."

David McClure, a Duke recruit from Ridgefield, Conn., was heartened to hear the news.

"It was an incredible relief," McClure said. "All I can say is I'm speechless. I'm so happy he's staying."

Gary Melchionni, father of junior Lee Melchionni and a former Duke basketball player, expressed relief that Krzyzewski will try to add to his impressive Duke resume.

"That's great news," Melchionni said. "I just want him to get back to work."

Krzyzewski has had several flirtations with the NBA and has said he came close to leaving Duke in 1990 to coach the Boston Celtics.

Following the loss to the Pistons, the Lakers said Jackson wouldn't return. Jackson, who signed a five-year, $30 million contract with the Lakers in June 1999, guided them to championships in his first three seasons.

Former Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich has been considered a front-runner to succeed Jackson. He has met with team owner Jerry Buss and Kupchak.

Former Lakers coach Pat Riley, an executive with the Miami Heat, also met with Buss and Kupchak, but issued a statement saying he wasn't a candidate.

Others mentioned have been Kurt Rambis and Jim Cleamons, members of Jackson's staff.

But the Lakers appeared most interested in trying to lure Krzyzewski from Duke, a private school where basketball has a rabid following among the 6,300 students.

The Cameron Indoor Stadium hardwood is named "Coach K Court." Outside the arena, a sign designates the grassy plot where students camp out to attend games as "Krzyzewskiville," where the coach has been known to occasionally buy pizzas for the waiting "Cameron Crazies."

After the Lakers' interest became known, Duke officials said they were open to improving Krzyzewski's contract.

John Burness, Duke's senior vice president for public and government relations, said Monday the university has spoken with Krzyzewski about the contract "and it's reasonable to assume some modifications will be made." He would not elaborate.

Burness said the Lakers' effort to land Krzyzewski was nothing new at Duke.

"We have some of the most outstanding academic people in the world, and we have to address the fact that other leading institutions try to raid us regularly," he said.

"We realize that when we have the best people ... they'll always be in high demand."