The return of Greg Schiano is not set in stone quite yet, but the rock isn’t far from being engraved with a signed deal in place. NJ Advance Media’s Steve Politi, Keith Sargeant, and James Kratch reported Friday evening that Rutgers has agreed to meet the demands of Schiano and the process is nearing the finish line, citing three sources.
Here are the key details of the current state of the search and the stage negotiations appear to be in, per the report:
- The requests that Rutgers reportedly is set to agree to include “significant investments including his annual salary, a increased salary pool for his assistant coaches and facilities improvements, potentially including a new football-only facility to replace the Hale Center that would include an indoor practice space.” The report indicates there could be additional demands, but these are the key one’s and what is known as of now.
- The Board of Governors’ athletic committee met on Thursday and that the search firm Ventura Partners that Hobbs hired reportedly made a presentation to the group.
- For a deal to be finalized, the athletic committee would need to present to the full Board of Governors and recommend the hiring of Schiano.
- A special BOG meeting would need to take place in order to approve the committee’s recommendation to hire Schiano. That meeting would be open to the public and requires 48 hour notice before taking place.
We already knew that Schiano met with Rutgers AD Pat Hobbs and Motorola CEO Greg Brown, also chair of the BOG’s athletic committee, on Tuesday. It was fair to wonder whether Rutgers was truly committed to bringing the football program to a level playing field with the majority of the Big Ten. A field house dedicated for football, something Schiano reportedly is asking for, was recently built at both Maryland and Northwestern. These are not the blue bloods of the Big Ten and shows the level of commitment that is needed.
All indications seem that Rutgers is ready to do just that. For the football program to truly be able to compete for Big Ten titles and to play in the Rose Bowl, something Hobbs stated as a goal in his press conference after firing former head coach Chris Ash, continuing to upgrade facilities is a must.
How they plan to fund this potential new project remains to be seen. As our Dave White wrote here, the athletic department as a whole is trending up but still needs of financial support as well. Whatever the plan is, which is likely a combination of private funding from big donors such as Brown and others, plus a public fundraising campaign, as well as the timeline for it, will all have to be approved by the BOG.
Based on this new report, it appears a critical juncture in the coaching search has been crossed. Rutgers wants Schiano back and it seems is willing to do what’s necessary to get him. Unless there is a last minute snafu or a last minute change of heart, the coach who made the Rutgers football program nationally relevant and a perennial winner a decade or so ago, is set to try and do it all over again.