Michigan's Sunday Shocker

Wolverines step up to make a big hire with Rodriguez

Dec. 16, 2007

By Brian Curtis

CSTV Senior Editor



Brian Curtis is a CSTV football and basketball analyst and a regular CSTV.com writer.
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So news out of Morgantown and Ann Arbor is that Rich Rodriguez is on his way. 


Let's look at this from three different angles.


First, I am shocked. I am shocked in that Michigan was clearly ready to up the ante when it comes to paying coaches. 


The UM athletic department is notorious for underpaying coaches in all sports, and from what I am hearing, a deal for $2.5-2.8 million a year will be signed.  But not only am I shocked that Michigan will pay that much, they surely will be paying part or all of Rodriguez's $4 million West Virginia buyout.  I am sure we will learn in the coming hours who is footing the bill, but that's a lot of cash and if Michigan paid for it, I am even more surprised.




Second, what a great hire for Michigan.  I know that from appearances, it looks like they swung and missed on Les Miles and Greg Schiano, but as I reported last week, they were not going to hire Miles, regardless of how it was handled.  Schiano, Michigan believed was coming. 


Rodriguez would be considered one of the top coaches in America.  Not quite at the Pete Carroll/Urban Meyer level, but certainly in the next tier.  People will wonder if his spread offense will work at Michigan; but those same people wondered that about Meyer's offense at Florida and he has a national title.  Rodriguez is a good recruiter, charismatic, and will win at UM.  The problem is the personnel on campus now may not work with his system.  But maybe he will adjust?  Bill Martin took a lot of heat for the way the search has gone but ending up with Rich Rodriguez shuts a lot of people up.


Third, you have to feel for West Virginia.  Twice in twelve months they have lost a coach to the University of Michigan.  Of course, they got Bob Huggins now. 


So where will they turn for a football coach?  They might stay in house, probably in the West Virginia family at the very least.


At least the Michigan search is over.  That's a good thing for all of us.