The University of Minnesota has now officially said Smith will be introduced as the 16th coach of the Golden Gophers at a noon press conference Friday.
Smith flew into St. Paul Thursday evening and was whisked away by university officials without speaking to reporters.
The Wildcats went 22-and-12 under Smith this season and made the NCAA tournament, but lost to top-seeded Kansas in the second round. That turned up the heat on Smith, who led Kentucky to the championship in 1998. The Wildcats haven't been back to the Final Four since.
Kentucky lost ten or more games in five seasons under his watch, prompting demanding fans to nickname him "Ten-loss Tubby."