In the middle of this afternoon, a few rumors started spreading that Steve Lavin will not be NC State’s next coach. However, the circus continued because other reports from Pack Pride and The Wolfpacker’s Message boards partially contradicted the rumor and indicated that Lavin would be the next coach under the caveat that “certain terms and conditions are met”.
As a follow-up, one of our authors spoke with a source who wouldn’t share specifics when we asked, “What the hell does it mean if “certain terms and conditions are met”? Heck, Dean Smith can be our next coach “if certain terms and conditions are met. What kind of information is that?
Evidently the supposed hang-up revolves around the amount of ‘guaranteed’ money available for Lavin. As we highlighted for you in this interesting piece on How Coaches are Paid (Related: Three contract structures), the only the part of coaches’ contracts customarily guaranteed in the State of North Carolina (NC State’s Athletics Department) is the money paid by the Department to the coach. Media, shoe and other ancillary compensation are predicated on the coach’s employment at the school.
Let’s say Lavin initially received an offer of (guaranteed) $250k for five years – that is a guaranteed $1.25MM in addition to the other sources of compensation that we expect to total in the range of $1 million to $1.5 million per annum. Surely Lavin does not expect to do so poorly that he expects to fired in the first 3 to 4 years? This means that Lavin effectively has a guarantee totaling millions of dollars in the coming 3 to 5 years that he won’t make at ESPN.
We don’t know all of the specifics, but we are somewhat concerned by this situation. First, it feels very prima-donna-ish that this extra (somewhat inconsequential) guarantee of money is that big of a deal for a guy that doesn’t have a coaching job and hasn’t even been able to get interviews at schools where he previously coached (like Purdue). Second, from a business point of view, what has Steve Lavin done to merit an exception to North Carolina’s business practices to allow to pay him more guaranteed money than is usually the case?
Preliminarily, we are a little fearful that this information is a set-up for NC State to save face in a scenario where Lavin turns down the job. If the afternoon rumor that Lavin is NOT the guy holds up, then the NC State spin-machine will most definitely be looking to blame something outside of their control as the reason why the deal didn’t work with Lavin. It would never cross their mind – or anyone at NC State’s – that they just f’d up by chasing the wrong guy, for the wrong reasons, in the wrong way.
Which one of these directions is the right direction? Sheesh. We will continue to work to confirm where this is going as it just keeps getting nuttier and nuttier from Lee Fowler’s Lake House, where the search has primarily been conducted. (Tough life)
Regardless of if State lands Lavin or not – Fowler has a MAJOR problem on his hands — NO OFFER SHOULD HAVE EVER COME FROM STATE IF ALL “TERMS AND CONDITIONS” WEREN’T ALREADY PUT TOGETHER!
Steve Lavin isn’t even a current college basketball coach. Therefore, since he is (obviously) so high on Fowler’s, NC State could have been speaking with him since April 1st. Why are we not set on “certain terms and conditions” for Lavin 22 days after the news broke that Sendek was leaving and almost 40 days after Fowler first new of Arizona State’s interest in Sendek? What the hell has Fowler been doing for three weeks if he doesn’t have all of the terms and conditions with Lavin nailed down?
We don’t know what all this means…and, like all information in coaching searches…we don’t know at what point in the timeline the information that we are gathering is most up to date? Things change so damn fast that it is hard to piece together timelines of when information is current.
A few other points:
* Regardless of if Lavin is ultimately hired as NC State’s next basketball coach, the recent information definitely supports the premise that Steve Lavin is Lee Fowler’s next choice (as sad as that may be to some). So, Lavin doesn’t accept the job then we have major problems.
* Additionally, this does not mean that Beilein is necessarily “the next guy”. Even if NC State would want him to be the next guy, how would Beilein’s ego handle being 4th choice? If Lavin is the guy that Fowler wants, then Fowler better hope that he gets him because the options after a 3rd public rejection will be quite different from the options before it.
* If NC State really did offer the job to Lavin, then the offer should have been pulled the moment The Sporting News reported it on Friday night. Everyone knows that the leak came from Lavin’s side. Why are we even speaking to someone that did this to us? Why is all of this coming out on Monday? Did nobody work this weekend? Was the weather at Fowler’s lake house too nice to worry with the coaching search and trying to nail down these terms and conditions?
* After serving at UCLA as the lead assistant under NCAA-embarassment, Jim Harrick, Steve Lavin was nailed for three NCAA violations as Head Coach. He didn’t have the highest of reputations in the industry. That said, it doesn’t surprise some of our sources that Lavin leaked this “offer” to Mike DeCourcy.
* If Lee Fowler was stupid enough to offer the job to his personal friend, Steve Lavin, in a manner in which NC State could be turned down (particularly publicly), then he should be fired the moment we announce our new coach. How can you put yourself in a position to get turned down for a coaching gig by a guy that is not a coach!?!
* If NC State were going to hire Beilein, they still must work through negotiations related to West Virginia’s $3MM buyout of Beilein. Buyouts are something NC State isn’t accustomed to dealing with as our past Athletics Directors, like Les Robinson, somehow thought that it was prudent not to lock up coaches with buyouts while simultaneously structuring contracts requiring the school to pay larger-than-market buyouts if we wanted to fire a coach (see Herb Sendek’s situation five years ago). Thanks, Les!
PS: We continue to be amazed at how absolutely stupid some of our readers (many of which post at Pack Pride) truly are. We’re just a bunch of average guys trying to pull together resources and information for a community that prides itself on a helluva lot more quality than is available on the idiot boards.
We are not a â€œnews site.â€? Itâ€™s a blog. Big difference. Of course, most people inherently understand the difference. As we have said dozens of times, our focus is on discussing and analyzing what is out there when it arises – our focus is not to “break news”.
On one of the threads we just learned that “we” evidently criticized Chuck Amto in a recent basketball article (huh?), we evidently endorsed Dereck Whittenburg last week (huh?), and we also were on the grassy knoll in Dallas. We also learned that we don’t take stands on issues? (Huh?) And we are criticized for misinformation?