"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Time to put Cottingham's acumen to work....lawyering

Well one benefit of Cottingham as AD is that he's a lawyer. How gifted we don't know, but while he's figuring out who to hire he can also lay the ground work for MU to get a huge chunk of change from Tom Crean and/or Indiana University.

What comes into question here is the buyout in the contract. Some are reporting a small buyout, which begs the question who in the MU general counsel's office approved that. Last I checked, our general counsel was.....Cottingham....for many years. Let's assume that rumor of a small buyout is not true and there is a large buyout. Well, good, that's what large buyouts are for, to protect schools on their investments and prevent easy poaching. Doesn't always work, but it's a deterrent. Now, what if there was no buyout as some others are implying. In other words, MU has him under contract for another 8 years and he owes this service to Marquette. Ah, this is where the fun comes in.

See West Virginia vs Rich Rodriguez for what could be a foreshadowing of things to come. Of course, if it gets to that point then it becomes the legal system determining if contracts were breached, what was promised or not promised, etc., and ultimately the two sides settle...usually. A lot of bad publicity usually comes out of it too, not something that anyone wants to see.

So rest assured, MU isn't going to get a $12 to $15 million check from IU or Tom Crean so he can coach in Bloomington. That's a pipe dream and a silly proposition - but MU will cash in. However, that is not to suggest that MU shouldn't press IU very hard on this if, in fact, there is no 'buyout' per se. MU should be entitled to a large compensation amount and Cottingham will press very hard for it. That money will need to be used to hire the next guy and to show MU is serious about it's legal stance on other contracts.

Fun times. Either way, MU stands to get a huge pay day on this. Spend the money wisely.

Thanks for the memories Tom, especially 2003 but don't let the door hit you where the good Lord split you.

1 comment:

jce said...

Well, a small buy out would be in place because TC wanted one. It was part of the negotiations. The General Counsel wouldn't have had a problem with it, because it was legal - their job is to address the legality of the contracts...not the negotiated points. My guess is that this has all been covered anyway. MU wouldn't have issued such a rosy statement if they felt they were not going to be compensated fairly.