Friday, December 14, 2007

Sporting News: West Virginia's Rich Rodriguez Negotiating With Michigan?

Thanks to my buddy Ben who sent this link along, the Sporting News is reporting that West Virginia head football coach Rich Rodriguez is in Toledo today with his agent to negotiate a potential deal with the University of Michigan to become the team's next head football coach.

There's a new twist in Michigan's ongoing search for a head coach: University officials are meeting with West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez, according to Sporting News Radio correspondent Michael Bradley.

Rodriguez and his agent are in Toledo today to negotiate with Michigan athletic director Bill Martin and university president Mary Sue Coleman.

Michigan has been looking for a head coach since Lloyd Carr announced his retirement Nov. 19 after 13 seasons leading the program.

Rodriguez would be an incredible choice, may be every bit the coach Les Miles is, and would make the school two-for-two in stealing West Virginia coaches as Michigan hired former WVU men's basketball coach John Beilein last year. Rodriguez is 60-26 at West Virginia, an amazing turn around at a school which was 3-8 in his first season. Since that time (2001) he has never lost more than 4 games in a season, and the last three seasons he has led the Mountaineers to 11-1, 11-2, and 10-2 seasons with two BCS Bowl births (a Sugar Bowl win over Georgia in 2005 and another trip this season against Oklahoma).

This would be a an amazing coup for Bill Martin who has not had a good few weeks. Pulling Rodriguez away from alma matter is going to be tough, but if Michigan could pull it off, it would certainly make up for the mess that was the Les Miles courtship. It's actually kind of surprising Rodriguez name has not come up substantively before now considering Michigan's early hiring of Beilein. And considering Michigan's other options at this point (Brady Hoke? Ron English?) Rodriguez would be everything a Michigan fan could ask for and more.

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