This is always a dangerous enterprise, but here we go with some good old fashioned message board rumormongering.
7:41 PM Yesterday. In a post title "Bad News vs. Good News," WVSports site mod "Vernon" offers a response that stirs some interesting back and forth:
|Bad News vs Good News - Mounties 2004 3/30 7:41 PM (show all) Views 1920|
|EERSFAN - Mounties 2004 3/30 9:23 PM|
|Re: EERSFAN - EERSFAN 3/30 11:18 PM|
|Re: Bad News vs Good News - EERSFAN 3/30 7:58 PM|
|Re: Bad News vs Good News - Vernon 3/30 7:54 PM|
|Vernon...curious to know - rog1187 3/30 8:06 PM|
|Re: Vernon...curious to know - Vernon 3/30 8:10 PM|
|Re: Vernon...curious to know - backcountry mounty 3/30 8:15 PM|
|well that leads me to think - rog1187 3/30 8:13 PM|
|Again, things change ......... - armchairqb 3/30 9:11 PM|
|Re: Bad News vs Good News - EERSFAN 3/30 8:05 PM|
|Re: Bad News vs Good News - backcountry mounty 3/30 8:00 PM|
|So, from your thoughts here... - MoTown'eers 3/30 7:56 PM|
|Re: So, from your thoughts here... - Vernon 3/30 8:05 PM|
|Re: So, why is he so disenchanted with WVU? - Northcoast EER 3/30 8:13 PM|
(The "disenchanted" post spawned a number of additional responses that aren't illuminating and have been snipped for brevity.)
More pebbles come down the mountain in the wake of this one: something titled "Vernon, with all due respect...", another "I leave the board this afternoon and BOOM" followed up with a "not worried about Coach B" -- though at least part of the "boom" is about weird but talented scatback Noel Devine, who signed a LOI with WVU today -- plus your typical message board venting.
1:02 PM today. "cream
er14" posts this:
Message board freaks out like whoah. Scout WVU board picks up on it and gives an indications of this guy's rep:
Saw that too - coming from a very solid poster as well. This is the same guy who gave the scoop on Coach Rod staying, ND verballing, WR coach hiring, the initial hiring of Ron West. This guy definitely has an 'in' with the athletic department.
ND = Noel Devine, and indeed the guy's most recent post before today's is dated 2/6 and is titled "ND will be a EER"; the post before that is dated 2/2 and is titled "RT, ND, WR Coach." Chances this guy is a solid insider are very high. What we have here is a full-fledged, multiply-sourced insider freakout indicating that Beilein is outta herrrrrrrre. I hesitate to offer anything rock solid given WVU pulling Rich Rodriguez back through the rabbit hole, but my finely honed internets spidey sense indicates that this is for real. Dollars to donuts Michigan is locking Beilein up as we speak. Or type. Or read. Whatever.
With Michigan reportedly focused on John Beilein in their search for their next basketball coach, Beilein's much-discussed buyout looms ever larger. How big is it? Depending on who you talk to it could be as much as $4 million or as low as two once taxes and economics and all that jazz get considered. The Ann Arbor News FOIAed John Beilein's contract and took it to a local law-talkin' guy in an attempt to determine just how much of a hurdle it is. The results:
I think the answer is effectively he will not be taxed on it,'' said Douglas Kahn, a law professor at Michigan who examined the contract for The News on Friday.
Timing would be the key. Kahn said no tax would be due if Michigan hired Beilein, then paid the buyout. The contract doesn't specify when the buyout must be paid.
"There would be an agreement with West Virginia that the payment isn't made until after he is hired, until he's clearly an employee,'' Kahn said. "If an employer reimburses an employee for a business expense, it becomes a non-itemized deduction. Then it's above the line and there are no limitations on it.''
Emphasis mine; an effort to highlight the assumption that underpins the article. Indications are that West Virginia is in no mood to come to such an agreement if you wander by 'Eer message boards, but I have some further doubts as to whether West Virginia needs to be agreed with at all. You can check out Beilein's contract for yourself without FOIAing anything and trace the path of his buyout.
Section V-D-b: ...if Coach terminates the agreement for any reason without breach of the Agreement by University, in addition to all other forfeitures and penalties provided herein, Coach will pay University Five Hundred Fifty Thousand Dollars ($550,000) as liquidated damages.
Simple half-million. When they extended his contract after one season they jacked it up. 2003:
...if Coach terminates the agreement for any reason without breach of the Agreement by University, in addition to all other forfeitures and penalties provided herein, Coach will pay University a sum equal to Three Hundred Thousand Dollars ($300,000) per year for the remainder of the Agreement's term, subject to proration for any partial year.
Note that the balance isn't due right at the front: he pays 300k per year until the contract expires.. The contract length is extended to six years at this point. The next year Beilein's contract is extended without modification. In 2005 the length of the contract extends to a seventh year, Beilein gets a raise, and the hammer buyout gets dropped. 2005:
...if Coach terminates the agreement for any reason without breach of the Agreement by University, in addition to all other forfeitures and penalties provided herein, Coach will pay University a sum equal to Three Hundred Thousand Dollars ($500,000) per year for the remainder of the Agreement's term, subject to proration for any partial year.
(Further note that there are no exceptions in the contract language. The rumor that Beilein's contract has a penalty-free NBA out is incorrect.) The contract language remains the same but the amount increases. The contract clearly stipulates that Beilein pay the buyout in 500k chunks every year. Law-talkin' guy again:
Kahn also believes the actual buyout would be closer to $2 million rather than $2.5 million because of the buyout clause's language.
"It's still a lot of money, but it's not $2.5 million,'' Kahn said. "You've got to reduce it to present value because every payment that's a year or more later is not worth $500,000. ... That means the $2.5 million has to be discounted to present value.''
IANAL, but I did take discrete math. I think this should mean that Beilein has the option of delaying at least 80% of the payments he'd have to make until he was obviously a Michigan employee; at that point Michigan could pay it without it being counted as income. Also, exactly when Beilein owes West Virginia the money (Lebowski) is not specified... it just says "per year". And it's prorated. If WVU was to demand it right away, Beilein could hypothetically play WVU the prorated share for the rest of this year -- which according to his contract ends in two weeks -- and then Michigan could cover 99% of the buyout without invoking onerous taxes. Since it seems 50% of this blog's readership is lawyers I'm sure to get corrected in the comments; dissect away.
The upshot: the widely circulated $2.5 million figure is probably high by $500k.
UPDATE: As you might expect, WVU fans think law-talkin' guy is stupid and that his reading of contract is wrong. I am still not a lawyer but the phrasing seems clear to me: "500k per year for the remainder of the Agreement's term." If it was a lump sum up front, wouldn't it be "500k for each remaining year on the contract" or some such thing?
Meanwhile... the WVA Scout board has what appears to be a bonafide insider who proved his mettle during the Rich Rodriguez soap opera. I reproduce his comments in this thread for you to take or leave as you please:
Several Truths re: Coach B situation
First, he was as good as gone last year. How do I know? I know the attorney who reviewed the contract -- yes it was the buyout.
Second, he has requested that his buyout be reduced during this basketball season. Ask yourself why this would be and what consideration could we get in return? The reasoning for not doing it is that if he is going to go, we might as well get the buyout $$ to use for new coach. If he is going to stay, then there would be no need to reduce the buyout because it would never come into play.
Third, there were some discussions this year with respect to renegotiation of his contract. I stated on this board before that the Hardesty situation has influenced these talks. There are some differences of opinions with respect to certain powers at be and it will be interesting to see how this plays out. [Hardesty is WVU's outgoing president -ed]
There are two schools of thought with respect to the Coach B situation and the shifting powers that be. I don't know if Hardesty leaving will be much of a factor in the risk of Coach B leaving as that is likely on any school which truly makes a run at Coach B -- at least this year. The chances of Coach B staying would be better (does not mean they are bad now) if the Presidential situation were more "solid." Now, if Coach B stays this year and would want to leave after next season, he may get his way.
Coaching is a business and while Coach B is held in high regard, his personal interests are at stake. He did double talk with respect to the NC State situation. You may still be in denial, but this did happen.
Again, I never said he was going anywhere. I just think the Coach B/WVU relationship is not as strong as you (and I) would like it to be.
And the interesting one:
Ok -- some updated info -- most has already been posted, but I can confirm this --Eddie P did offer a new deal to Coach B. Coach B was offered 500K raise and also there was some reduction in the buyout. This has not been accepted yet because Coach B does not want to have the buyout hanging over his head. -- I can understand that, but if you were not going to leave, you could make the buyout $100,000,000, right?
e has been what I would term a "lack of communication" between the Coach B and the Athletic Department regarding this issue in recent days.
That being said, I am sure the anticipated Michigan offer has Coach B evaluating his offer.
Also, some former players who are very, very close to Coach B have indicated that they do not think he will leave. Some others close to the program seem to agree.
What does all of this mean -- not much I guess? I think we are all justified in our concerns.
Someone with "very high power" wants this "athletic department" issue to remain as is. Others want him out. So, it will be a delicate balance and it will be interesting to watch over the next year. The more info that goes through my Eerhole, the more I think Coach B will stay. Note -this is just my opinion and should not be considered as gospel. I am still working on solid info for all of us.
Nothing yet, though media reports continue to flow in that Michigan has Beilein at the top of the list. Fox Sports:
West Virginia's John Beilein has moved to the forefront of Michigan's search to replace Tommy Amaker, several sources told FOXSports.com. ... In addition to Beilein, Vanderbilt's Kevin Stallings is also in play -- as is Southern Illinois coach Chris Lowery.
(The Fox Sports article also claims that Amaker is likely to get the Harvard job, partially because the school is embarrassed by not having a black head coach for any of their 41(!) varsity sports.)
The search for a Michigan men's basketball coach has centered on three names - West Virginia's John Beilein, Vanderbilt's Kevin Stallings and Southern Illinois' Chris Lowery - multiple sources told The News on Thursday.
Vanderbilt Coach Kevin Stallings appears to be the leader in the clubhouse right now for the Michigan job.
Wait... wha? The Post article is a general "wow lookit all the coachin' rumors" thing, so it's likely Feinstein talked to a bunch of guys, one of whom said the Stallings bit. All other current reports that dare to be specific have him as one of the short list guys but behind Beilein. There's also this obscure WVA newspaper that cobbled together a story based on other reports, but it contains nothing new.
Update 3/26: Removed FL OL Michael Brewster (dropped us). Downgraded PA TE Mark Weddeburn to red after ugly Scout article. Upgraded CO OL Bryce Givens to green: we lead w/ Nebraska. Linked to articles on OH S Dan McCarthy, PA OL Luke Nix (upgraded Nix to yellow since this supposed heavy Pitt lean does not appear to be materializing), PA OL RJ Dill, OH LB Brandon Beachum, TX OL JB Shugarts, KY DE Dexter Heyman. Upgraded Zebrie Sanders to yellow; top-five omission in earlier article appears to be momentary oversight. Added MD OL Lane Clelland, SC OL Kenneth Page.
Editorial Opinion: Much to get through, most of it red. : (
Basically expected bad stuff: OH TE Jake Stoneburner committed to OSU; FL OL Michael Brewster isn't listing us anymore; PA TE Mark Wedderburn is probably heading towards PSU.
Unexpected bad stuff: Pre-signing day rumors of a commit from OMG shirtless Edison five-star Brandon Leslie could not have been more wrong. Leslie has the offer list of a mediocre four-star (Nebraska and Washington at the moment), hasn't been offered, and doesn't list us. A couple more articles without a mention and he's gone. His teammate Robert Golden is fairly shirtless but says things like "I really want to stay in the Pac-10". Like Leslie, only tenuously on the list. Andrew Sweat, who seemed very interested in Michigan according to a couple February articles, now lists us fourth on a highly ordered list. We aren't getting him without a Christmas miracle.
Most unhappily, JB Shugarts named two leaders who were not us: OSU and LSU. Frowns.
Basically neutral stuff: Added OG Kenneth Page, who we offered, linked to a few articles that are noncommittal.
Guru re-evaluation stuff. Every year there are a number of kids who show up on the guru sites' top 100 and All-American lists based on reputation alone, never get the sort of attention you'd think they warrant after getting everyone all hyped up, and then fade away to the land of three stars. A classic example from last year was Penn State tight end John Ditto. This year you've got Leslie, OH LB Brandon Beachum -- though Beachum does have an Ok offer he doesn't have offers from M or OSU, both of whom have issued a ton -- and KY DE Dexter Heyman. Heyman's only offers to this point are from Cinci, Northwestern, and Louisville despite being on the preliminary Rivals 100 list. Sometimes this is a matter of film getting out late and sometimes it's just plain misevaluation. Only time will tell. This is most unfortunate in Heyman's case, as he claimed Michigan as a (very tenuous) leader early in the recruiting year.
Positive stuff: The earlier Zebrie Sanders article that omitted us from his top five seems erroneous. CO OL Bryce Givens named M and Nebraska as leaders; MD OL Lane Clelland visited the midwest and returned with M and ND as leaders. I don't think PA OL Luke Nix is the Pitt lock everyone assumes him to be based on his quotes in recent articles. He's got a brother there, yes, and is very familiar with the campus, but he's been circumspect when asked. I think he's in play.
Beilein Beilein Beilein. Noted on the sidebar but worth repeating is Rosenberg's latest:
From all indications, John Beilein is not just a candidate to be Michigan's next basketball coach. Beilein is the candidate. [emphasis original]
Michigan athletic director Bill Martin is not tipping his hand publicly, but he appears to have zeroed in on West Virginia's Beilein. There are a few hurdles to overcome before Beilein is introduced as the next coach. Beilein's Mountaineers are still playing in the NIT, so he has yet to have a face-to-face sit-down with Martin. When that happens, anything is possible. One man might say something to turn off the other. Beilein might ask for too much money, though that is highly doubtful.
And Beilein might say, "Michigan? Ha! West Virginia, mountain momma, take me home." That, however, also would be surprising. Beilein had serious interest in the Indiana and North Carolina State jobs last year (he was a finalist for both) and has told friends he wants a shot at a national championship.
There is no doubt he would have a better chance at Michigan than at West Virginia. In other words, the hurdles are 10 inches high. Martin and Beilein easily can hold hands and jump over them together. It is not a 100% lock that Beilein will be Michigan's next coach.
But it is better than 50-50.
I wish Rosenberg had been a little more explicit as to whether he's got an inside source here or if this is just a gut feeling. It certainly sounds like he's got good reason to make such a strong assertion, but a little more transparency would be nice.
Andy Katz has the same info:
Michigan is expected to seek out West Virginia coach John Beilein this weekend in Atlanta after the Mountaineers finish with the NIT final on Thursday night in New York.
Multiple sources told ESPN.com that the Wolverines plan to unofficially interview three or four coach candidates -- possibly Beilein, Xavier's Sean Miller and Southern Illinois' Chris Lowery -- and then choose one for a formal interview. Their focus, though, is on Beilein.
Katz has been throwing out random names for two weeks now. It's good that he's finally on the right track. Cookie time.
Endorsed by Wonk. Also noted in sidebar; also worth re-noting. Wonk, perhaps feeling lingering guilt over abandoning the conference that nurtured his blogging ambitions from thew womb, takes an extended look at John Beilein and gives him two thumbs up. Most illuminating passage for any PSL coaches or fathers of incoming point guards who regard Beilein's system as a "slow down" approach is a look at WVU's pace in the Big East. Number in parens is possessions per conference contest:
8. St. John's (65.2)
9. Villanova (65.2)
10. West Virginia (64.2)
11. Louisville (64.1)
12. Cincinnati (63.2)
You'll note that Michigan managed to pound out a mere 61.2 possessions per game, and that West Virginia's number would have been the highest in the entire conference, though the pace of their opponents undoubtedly had something to do with that. Kenpom's numbers are slightly different (Wonk uses only conference games) and less flattering but hardly tell the story of a redneck Northwestern: West Virginia was faster than four Big Ten teams in terms of pace -- with an adjustment for how fast your opponents play -- and the two teams directly in front of the Mountaineers, Michgian and Minnesota, were two of the most turnover-plagued teams in the country. Turnovers have a tendency to make you look fast, if stupid. All indications are that at the very least West Virginia's pace will fall in the middle of the conference. Granted, the Big Ten is the slowest, most boring conference in all the land, but you can't credibly claim that a lack of pace will kill Michigan recruiting if the Big Ten had a recruiting year much like the SEC just did in football -- and they did.
Potential Michigan Coaches Deathmatch! I haven't paid close enough attention to the NCAA tournament in recent years to remember this without an assist from helpful messageboarders, but last year six seed West Virginia and John Beilein crushed eleven seed Southern Illinois 64-46. While it would be silly to conclude from a single game that Beilein the man, the quotes from the Saluki players in the aftermath are interesting:
"We ran into something we've never seen before," Southern Illinois forward Randal Falker said. "It was all confusing. I've never seen a team that can all hit the 3s. We just couldn't match up with them."
"We haven't played a team like that where all five guys can hit the 3," Southern Illinois guard Tony Young said. "It was a crazy game."
"We ran into a buzz saw," coach Chris Lowery said. "Their experience outreaches our tradition."
...not really sure what the last one means. Note that this is a slightly less experienced version of this year's Saluki four-seed that featured some seriously hellacious man-to-man defense.
Verrry eeeenteresting. The Hockey News surveyed 283 NHLers -- almost half the league -- on a wide variety of issues. The results are really interesting: 70% of players want to keep the shootout as-is, a scanty 3% want the penalties for fighting increased, a small plurality want to keep the (retarded) delay of game minor for throwing it over the boards, and 66% of the league hates Sean Avery more than anyone else. (Duh: Elisha Cuthbert.) Of direct relevance to you, the fervent college hockey fan (or person who just tolerates my fervent fandom):
If you had a son who was an NHL prospect, would you prefer to see him play:
1) U.S. college hockey (140) 52%
2) Major junior hockey (104) 39%
3) European hockey (26) 10%
4) Other (0)
Also I must note this:
What's the best thing about your job?
1) Living dream/playing/adrenaline/sold out buildings, etc. (111) 43%
2) Friendship/Teammates (32) 12%
3) Money/Lifestyle (26) 10%
4) Travel/other cities/road trips (25) 9.7%
5) Times off/Summer (22) 8.5%
6) Playing against best/competing (11) 4.2%
7) Everything (8) 3%
8) Fans (6) 2.3%
9) Women (5) 2%
10) Naps (3) 1.2%
11) Winning (3)1.2%
12) Fame (2) 0.78%
13) Hotels (1) 0.4%
14) Media (1) 0.4%
15) Trainers (1) 0.4%
16) Video Coach, Steve Summers (1) 0.4%
Etc.: Interesting Daily article on life after football for people who aren't Alan Branch. Would have been more interesting if they had caught up with a David Bowens or even Kelly Baraka; News article on how M is going to have to ramp up its coaching pay (duh)... Izzo raked seven million this year(!).