Somehow the athletic's department's ongoing spat with soon-to-be-former Men's Basketball coach Fred Hill continues to drag on without resolution. I assumed that any delays meant that the two sides were still negotiating a buyout, but that apparently is not the case.
Rutgers has offered a $600,000 settlement, which Hill has declined. Hill had been given until Monday to accept the offer, at which point it was assumed he would be notified that he would be fired with cause.
However, no negotiations between the sides have taken place since that offer was made last Thursday, the person said.
At least Monday's meeting finally set the wheels in motion towards some decision, which may be coming later today. Meanwhile, one local assemblyman is trying to score political points in the midst of heated legislature negotiations over the FY 2011 NJ budget.
Rible, who serves as the Assembly Minority Whip, added: ""I don't know what planet Rutgers has been on, but we have a severe budget crisis that affects every public agency in New Jersey. It is incredible that university officials would have taxpayers pay $600,000 to a basketball coach they believe should be fired. This comes as the university is objecting to Governor Christie's attempt to cap tuition rates at public universities so that college students aren't unfairly burdened by the shared sacrifices being made throughout the state. The university's priorities are misplaced.''
- Saying anything right now is completely premature, as the athletic department has not yet made a final decision public. For all he knows, the athletic department could end up spending more on legal fees if Hill drags this out than they would on a settlement.
- Rible knows very well that the state provides only a quarter of the University budget, a figure that is dropping every year. Saying that taxpayers would be paying $600,000 is not at all truthful, even if institutional support is needed. The total cost will probably be higher if Hill stays and basketball continues to drown.
Myself, I don't care how good the case may be. This standoff needs to end as soon as possible. Rutgers musn't delay any longer in finding a new coach.
Other BB links of interest while this slowly unfolds:
- Not only is the program in stasis - no movement mean that rumored losses like Mike Rosario and Gil Biruta are stuck in place, as their external options continue to dwindle by the day. Sam Hellman at the Targum says that Rosario's teammates don't want him back, and he probably won't return anyway. On the Rosario front; while Gannett's sources seem insistent and confident about the tampering allegations, Adam Zagoria quotes someone else who disagrees entirely.
- ZAGSBLOG is also the only source mentioning any Bob Knight rumors.
- The new Rutgers Prep coach vows to establish a pipeline to Rutgers basketball. Huh. They're a school that's about five minutes down Easton, which split from Rutgers College decades ago. Seems to be wishful thinking, but you never know. Plainfield and New Brunswick are right around the corner from Somerset, and St. Benedict's and St. Patrick's could fall off with their coaching changes. If that vow proves true, it would probably make a lot of Rutgers fans feel conflicted, given the widespread (whether warranted or not) antipathy towards Parochial/Private high school athletic programs. Conincidentally enough, I have an upcoming post that sort of touches on that topic.
- Andrew "Red" Nicholas may re-open his recruitment if Fred Hill goes. The Syracuse bloggers won't be happy about this one, as they've been saving up Nicholas jokes for the past year.
- Adam Zagoria checks in on Hamady N'Diaye. The genial big man isn't saying much about the Hill saga.