FTF Virginia : Waiting For Tubby
It was reported here last week that a Virginia radio station reported that a big UVa donor was saying Tubby to Virginia was a "done deal."
Rumors have continued to focus on Tubby. One source who hasn’t given any good info since George Welsh resigned said that there was indeed a $3m deal done, with UVa’s “top target.” A more reliable source on the same board (sub. req'd) reported that the search is currently focusing on one and only one candidate, although there are of course contingency plans.
There was also some rumbling coming from Tubby’s brother-in-law or some other family member. I didn’t catch the gist of the rumor because it was deleted from thesabre (sub. req'd) in short order, but it was positive for UVa.
Monday, it was reported on a Kentucky radio station and a Cleveland TV station that UVa is going to offer Tubby $25m/5years. The reported source of these numbers is Tubby’s attorney. If this is true, either (1) Tubby’s attorney is soon to be Tubby’s ex-attorney, or (2) Tubby is “Beamering” (UNC fans may get the reference) UK to get a raise. But I don’t think Tubby is that kind of guy. But see K to the Lakers rumors.
Read the rest by clicking the link below.
And $5m/yr is preposterous. I would be embarrassed to be associated with a school that offered that amount to a sports coach.
Anupdatefrom Tuesday’s Daily Progress Charlottesville. This has the first confirmation I’ve seen from sources within the Virginia athletic department that Tubby is indeed the first choice, and they’re just waiting for him to lose to contact him. It’s also interesting (to me, at least) that UVa apparently already has a contingency plan should Iavaroni (see below) get the job but not come on the scene until after the Suns exit the playoffs. See Charlie Weis to Notre Dame, but on a much, much smaller scale.
This Daily Press (Newport News, VA)articlefrom Wednesday confirms that Tubby is the top choice and also states that Dave Leitao (Depaul) and Tom Crean (Marquette) are on the short list. The article also notes that AD Craig Littlepage recently had his Men’s Basketball Committee assignment moved from Syracuse to Chicago. Hmmm—who might be near Chicago? It also says that Barnes and Brey have slipped on the list.
A Wake board (sub. req'd) reported that Dave Odom has already accepted the UVa job, according to the parent of a USC-East walk-on. This is absurd.
And Denver talk radio Monday also reported that Marc Iavaroni is a leading candidate. Iavaroni is an assistant with the Suns (and signed a 2 year extension less than a month ago) who also was an assistant on UVa’s 1981 Final Four team. 4 year starter at UVa also.
In other news, Barnes and Tubby have both denied interest in the job, but imo they were some pretty weak denials—the kind of “I love it here, I’ve got a great situation here” denials that often precede a coach leaving. See, e.g., Roy to UNC. Nothing approaching “I am not candidate; if offered, I will not accept.” Which reminds me, I also don’t believe the denials of Condi Rice.
So reading the tea leaves, I think it is safe to assume now that Tubby is indeed UVa’s #1 choice, that UVa is prepared to make him a nice offer (~$2-2.5M/yr), and that all signs wouldn’t be pointing to this offer unless CL had some reason to think that Tubby would listen. I give it about a 1 in 5 chance of happening.
The prediction here remains Mike Brey, despite his poor end to this season. I’d rather have Iavaroni. This is probably a good time to remember also that Littlepage has an excellent track record of coaching searches. Baseball coach Brian O’Connor and tennis coach Brian Boland have been unqualified successes so far, and he really pulled a rabbit out of his hat when he hired Groh, when all signs were pointing elsewhere. So it could be somebody completely different. But with the new arena opening year after next, it had better be somebody good.
But I sure am rooting for Utah and Louisville.