Barnes Update – 11:45 am

Dave Glenn is doing a phenomenal job covering the NC State coaching search. A phenomenal job. In fact, he deserves a free plug and hyper-link to his blog and the ACC Area Sports Journal. Additionally, this link to 850 The Buzz is relevant to this entry.

Dave Glenn appeared on 850 AM “The Buzz” this morning. He said the following:

* Barnes has been offered huge money, but it’s all been done through back channels. Fowler has not met directly with Barnes yet. Fowler will only meet directly with Barnes if he knows what his answer is. Texas is trying to rework his contract and will do so.

* Barnes has not told State “no” as of this morning.

* Our offer to Barnes is structured similarly to Pitino’s and Tubby’s contracts. It includes retention bonuses, meaning if you are still here at Year X, you get a huge pot of money at that time. That is how our package is being “styled.” He thinks our “pot” in Year X is $5 million. It would make him one of the top 3-5 paid basketball coaches in the country.

* Glenn thinks we are handling this the right way and have really tugged on his heart strings through back channels. But he still thinks that unless Texas screws it up, he will stay at Texas in the end. He admits that is purely a guess on his part, though.

* He says his sources are Barnes’ proteges, Texas officials, ACC officials, and WPC contacts.

* He is adamant that Fowler had not met face-to-face with Barnes yet.

* Glenn says we have contacted as many as 10 other candidates behind the scenes, but no names.

* Glenn’s source at Texas told him they thought Texas would have had a press conference by now and is surprised at Rick’s level of interest in our job. Lawyers are involved, it is so complicated. Barnes want to see everything in writing.

The following are some comments that we feel comfortable sharing in light of Glenn’s public comments:

* Lee Fowler has NOT met with Rick Barnes in person; Lee Fowler has spoken to Barnes on the phone, as have many with NC State connections.

* Eddie Biedenbach was one of the first Wolfpackers to connect with Barnes. This was both appropriate and the right move as Biedenbach gave Rick Barnes his first college job in the early 1980s at Davidson. Barnes has always held Biedenback in very high regard.

* Lee Fowler is NOT TALKING to almost anyone about his role and his thoughts on the search. This is a very good thing.

* We feel comfortable in sharing that Chris Corchiani also reached out to Rick Barnes (and he may not have been the only other former Wolfpack player). We think that exhibiting this kind interest from old-guard NC State greats is a positive step in emphasizing the fanbase’s unity and the commitment that the entire program has to its future and to Barnes’ ability to unite us all.

* Chris Wright’s mother has indicated to NC State that there is a great chance that her son would remain committed if “certain” coaches were hired at State. Barnes was one of those coaches.

* Glenn’s comments regarding the financial package serve to help explain where some of the wild rumors related to the money State was offering Barnes. The rumors were close on dollar figures, but (of course) wrong on structural issues.

* That back-end, retention structure serves many positive purposes and few negative ones. Not the least of which allows State to present similar/identical “annual compensation” numbers to potential other candidates without bruising their egos by offering them less money.

* Additionally, sources told yesterday that PJ Tucker will declare to enter the NBA draft a year early just one day after word spread that LaMarcus Aldridge was hiring an agent.

* We have also heard from some folks in Texas’ administration and booster organization that are very nervous behind the scenes about the potential that they could lose Barnes to State.

* Glenn says that State has spoken with at least 10 potential candidates through various channels. It is unclear if Glenn means that State has initiated contact with those candidates or if State has spoken with 10 potential candidates in part because they chose to reach out to us. As we shared with you in a previous entry, this job has created huge buzz amongst many more (prominent) coaches than Lee Fowler ever imagined.

* Representatives for John Calipari expressed interest in the position early in the week. But, there is reason to believe that Calipari’s ego may not allow him to be “second choice”. We hope that State has been prudent in any potentail conversations with Calipari to position the search as having no #1 choice in our initial “gauge interest phase”.

* We have heard that Jay Wright is not a candidate based largely on his wife’s love of Villanova and the area. We have no insight into the impact that an offer of over $1 million dollars would impact those feelings.

* You get to a point where the fear of being “Beamerized” by Barnes makes the pressure on the situation almost unbearable. We hope that State is running parallel conversations with the likes of John Calipari and Billy Gillispie so that hypothetical agreements are in place so the trigger can be pulled very quickly in the event that Barnes is a no go.


* At some point, the pace of this courtship is could have negative implications on Barnes (and NC State). For example, Frank Haith has been mentioned as a top candidate for the Oklahoma job. But, if Barnes leaves for NC State many believe Haith would be the natural replacement (since he was on Barnes’ staff before getting the Miami job 2 years ago). Additionally, Haith has been rumored as NC State’s ultimate “fallback” coach. If Barnes doesn’t take the State job, Haith’s potential to land the job increases.

* Additionally, John Calipari’s name has been mentioned in Oklahoma. He is also a favorite of many Wolfpackers. If Barnes says no to State at the same time that Calipari says yes to Oklahoma, the dominos don’t fall well for NC State.

* IMHO, a doomsday scenario exists where Barnes says no to State, while OU hires Paul Hewitt from GT (a rumor out there) and GT hires John Calipari. Suddenly, the stakes in the ACC are raised even higher. I don’t place a high likelihood on this scenario (especially since Hewitt has a great recruiting class coming in next year).

* The plane tracking has been useless so far. Someone tracked one of Murphy’s planes from Rose Hill to Augusta National this morning, could he be at the Masters Golf Tournament?

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General NCS Basketball

143 Responses to Barnes Update – 11:45 am

  1. RAW 04/06/2006 at 10:26 AM #

    Geez! Just when I’m prepared to give up on Barnes, stuff like this gives me renewed hope!

    If he still says no, the back-loaded $$$ offer sounds more generous than what Tubby has at UK currently.

    Maybe this this can happen after all!

  2. beowolf 04/06/2006 at 10:26 AM #

    “When you put yourself in the position to win, you have a shot at winning.” — Jim Valvano to Brent Musberger, minutes after winning the national championship in 1983, talking about his coaching decisions during the game as well as Lorenzo Charles staying disciplined beneath the basket when Olajuwon had started up the court thinking Drexler had stolen the ball.

  3. 427HEVN aka California Wolfpacker 04/06/2006 at 10:26 AM #

    Good info from Glenn. It now becomes my 3rd perpetually open window including PP and SFN.

    IMHO, Fowler is handling this much better than I expected. Loose lips sink ships and all..

  4. BJD95 04/06/2006 at 10:27 AM #

    Good stuff. Keep hope alive!

  5. Sammy Kent 04/06/2006 at 10:31 AM #

    Surely Paul Hewitt wouldn’t leave Tech for Oklahoma. Gee I guess us ACC guys can be just as ego-centric as the UT fans, huh?

  6. Chief93 04/06/2006 at 10:35 AM #

    “If Barnes says no to State at the same time that Calipari says yes to Raleigh, the dominos don’t fall well for NC State.”

    You mean “Norman” instead of “Raleigh,” I assume?

    Note: Got it fixed. Thanks so much for highlighting

  7. Chief93 04/06/2006 at 10:42 AM #

    Thanks, that threw me for a second.

  8. JeremyHyatt 04/06/2006 at 10:43 AM #

    I hope this all breaks today… this is craziness. I want to know now! What was my grade on the final exam? A for Barnes , A- for Calipari, or B+ for whoever else may follow?? That’s awesome that Calipari has shown interest, he is another big name that could rake in top recruits, but I would suspect the administration would be hesitant considering his history with NCAA violations and our past.

  9. site admin 04/06/2006 at 10:46 AM #

    ^ Calipari has never been cited for an NCAA violation.

    Rick Pitino was once personally been cited for more NCAA violations than almost any other coach in NCAA history as an assistant at Hawaii.

    Has anyone ever mentioned that about Pitino in not giving him a job? Shit, the guy got the job at Kentucky who had been caught Fed Ex’ing money to recruits.

  10. TampaPack 04/06/2006 at 10:52 AM #

    Thank goodness SI is reporting that Odem send out a press release withdrawling his name from consideration for the job. There is no way we could have him on the sidelines….

  11. WTNY 04/06/2006 at 10:53 AM #

    ^ Calipari would be great! But I think the *perception* of problems that still floats around him would make him unlikely. Especially given State’s history. It may not be fair but it is what it is.

  12. TampaPack 04/06/2006 at 10:55 AM #

    I am also getting the real sense that our triangle neighboors are getting very nervious that we will have a viable canidate, and perhaps an equalily big name. I think they were certain we would screw this up and therefore give them another 3-4 wins per season….

  13. Jason2413 04/06/2006 at 10:57 AM #

    Interesting read. My impression is that Barnes is maneuvering to get concessions from Texas regarding salary, and dedication to the basketball program. Otherwise, the man has it made in Austin. He really has no reason to come to Raleigh, and I don’t expect him to.

    This is why how we handle Calipari is so important. Here is a guy who would win huge here, and WOULD have good reasons to jump to Raleigh. He can make millions at Memphis – in C-USA though being a big fish in a small pond. At NC State he can make the same millions, on a much larger stage, recruiting to an ACC school. He would simply be a juggernaught. We can’t alienate him with the discussions with Barnes, so I really hope the administration is in touch with him informally right now.

  14. class of '74 04/06/2006 at 11:02 AM #

    Maybe Lee knows basketball afterall? We shall see.

  15. JimmyVguy 04/06/2006 at 11:04 AM #

    I hope we get Barnes. If our second choice is Calipari I’ll be a little disgruntled for a bit. He’s not bad, but I’ve talked to a few ACC assistants and players and the perception of him is he’s a cheater. I wonder why nobody is mentioning Romar from Washington as a fallback guy or Jeff Ruland of Iona. If we get turned down by Barnes…then these guys may be the best options.

  16. DC Wolf 04/06/2006 at 11:06 AM #

    I don’t know how successful we’d be in “positioning” our talks with Calipari or other candidates as not having a number one candidate in mind and just “gauging interest.”

    Can we publically say we’ve just had informal talks with a number of candidates? Sure. But everyone and their brother knows that “unofficially” we’ve been coming after Barnes hard, seemingly first.

    If it’s not going to be Barnes, they’d better have some talking points ready about how the process played out, to fight off the impression that the coach we do get is Plan B. And frankly, we may be beyond that already.

  17. TVP 04/06/2006 at 11:06 AM #

    interesting…conflicts somewhat with what I heard from what I would consider to be a very good source.

  18. site admin 04/06/2006 at 11:08 AM #

    Lorenzo Romar is coaching the school where he graduated college. He is originally from California. What in the world would make him a fit for our job?

    Ruland has recently been implicated in some shady dealings that were bad enough to get the Iowa State coach fired immediately.

  19. J-wolf 04/06/2006 at 11:08 AM #

    I hope this all breaks tomorrow, that way I can start drinking as soon as I get off work, either in celebration or in disappointment. Oh, who am I kidding, I’m going to start drinking as soon as I get off work regardless…it’ll be Friday!

  20. JimmyVguy 04/06/2006 at 11:09 AM #

    I’m gonna trust you on that one and not bring up Romar or Ruland again.

  21. Wolf's Eye 04/06/2006 at 11:09 AM #

    The latest from Katz at ESPN is that it could be Brady from LSU. He’s a fiery guy, but not sure he’ll get the recruits that Barnes could bring in. Also, Katz is continually back-tracking about NCSU not being able to get a Barnes or Calipari caliber coach.

  22. JimmyVguy 04/06/2006 at 11:13 AM #

    Who is choice #2 then…
    Calipari is labled a cheater
    Tom Crean makes enough $$$ where he’s at
    Beilein runs a version of the offense we hate
    Romar is at the alma mater
    Jay Wright is in love with his wife who is in love with Nova (no go)
    Mike Montgomery is supposedly not interested
    Pitino is losing at Louisville
    Haith is a coach at another ACC school and there is an unwritten agreement…no stealing

    Tubby Smith??? Sidney Lowe???

  23. BJD95 04/06/2006 at 11:14 AM #

    Katz is a putz. Plus, every time I hear his name, I think of this guy:

  24. JimmyVguy 04/06/2006 at 11:15 AM #

    Brady? LSU? I hope not

  25. Orenthal 04/06/2006 at 11:16 AM #

    I would kill to see State hire Barnes.

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