ITH Super Happy Fun Time Coaching Search: Rick Barnes

  • 03/28/2008 12:30 pm in

barnesr.jpgKelvin is out the door and Dan is not our man, so that can only mean one thing: It’s coaching search time! Here’s a look at the candidates that could land in Bloomington. We’ll give you the pros, the cons and the bottom line. This afternoon: Texas’s Rick Barnes.

Pros: Barnes is a proven commodity and what he’s done at Texas — a football school — is fairly impressive. He’s been to 10 straight NCAA Tournaments (13 straight if you go back to his days at Clemson), including a run to the Final Four in 2003. This season, his Longhorns are back into the Sweet 16 despite the loss of last year’s player of the year, Kevin Durant. Besides Durant, he’s produced a nice crop of NBA players including T.J. Ford, Chris Mihm, Daniel Gibson and Lamarcus Aldridge.

Cons: Barnes is making over $2.1 million annually in Austin and the facilities he enjoys there are second-to-none. He’s got one of the better practice facilities anywhere and the recently upgraded Frank Erwin Center. With his current situation, he would likely command a hefty pay raise to entice him to leave the friendly confines of Austin, Texas. Despite the plethora of talent he’s had while at Texas, he’s been bounced in the first weekend of March in five of his ten seasons at the helm.

Bottom line: Barnes is likely a long shot for a couple of reasons: 1) His current situation in Austin is ideal. He’s at a football school and the pressure to win isn’t as big as it would be in Bloomington. 2) He’s already one of the highest paid coaches in the game and while his resume is solid, does it justify paying him upwards of $2.5 million? Probably not. If the first couple of priorities fall through for the “blue ribbon” search committee, perhaps Barnes could get a look.

Reminder: Registration now required to post comments. Click here to sign up for free. You’ll get access to avatars, the ability to rate comments and gain clout points based on the rating of your comments by other users.

Filed to:

  • BrianK

    Ok I heard from someone that IU committee and/or certain Alumni have been taking a private jet to Philadelphia? What's in Philly?

  • easy

    Nice summary. Barnes is someone they'd definitely look at. But I think you're right. If I was going to pay someone that much, it wouldn't be Barnes personally. I'd be ok with him if we got him, but that is a big price tag and I think he's just alright as a coach.

    Are you guys profiling Thad Matta soon? I'm interested to read that one.

  • tberry

    Barns is in his “Comfort Zone.” I can see no reason he would give up what he has for what might be at IU.

  • easy

    I believe some donor lives out there is a rumor I heard. Or they could be meeting with anyone. We met with Sampson in Houston, so going to Philly doesn't mean we're meeting with Jay Wright. Could be someone's agent. Anyone know where Pitino's agent is based out of?

    Now I would be excited if we found out that they were going to Philly to meet with Jamie Dixon, who is still a sleeper in this situation to me. He's done so he could talk, and I think he'd be a great hire. Plus we could get him at a reasonable price compared to some other candidates with major experience. And he's only 42 so he'd be here for 20 years theoretically. I'd be very happy, but we'll see. I loved watching Pitt play this year.

  • Disco_Briscoe

    Life is too good in Austin, to leave.

    Dixon from Pitt?

  • easy

    Oh and I've also read that the plane has gone to Missouri and South Carolina FWIW.

  • BrianK

    Rick's agent is from Ky not sure if he still lives there. He has a hell of a recruiting class for next year and a good possibliity of another strong tourney team not sure if he would want to leave and come here especially if we might be getting a 1 year ban.

  • JerryCT

    Does anyone know if the Committee has to get approval or at least talk to the school officials first before talking to the coach candidate ?

    Are we allowed to talk to coaches or agents before they exit the NCAA ?

    Wright is not in Philly anyway unless he is not coaching tonight. He deserves a heavy look

    I like Barnes alot but having been to Austin many times I wonder why all of us are not there. He is not coming a double the price

  • BrianK

    I'm not big on Barnes we would have to pay too much I thnk for him and what he has done so far.

  • BrianK

    Yeah they are “supposed” to get permission from the AD but over the past several years schools have been backdooring each other. It's not a rule or anything though.

  • easy

    BrianK, do you know much about any other agents for coaches? Maybe if we know of some based in the Philly area we'll have a better idea. Thad Matta? =) Jamie Dixon? =)

    Keep an eye on the plane, see if it goes west or to Wisconsin (Tony Bennett).

  • So we're tracking planes now? That seems kind of — stalkerish.

  • JerryCT

    I feel lost about what the committee's Process is . DO we have any info on :

    1. When did they make a list ?
    2. What criteria ?
    3. When did they start talking to AD's ?
    4. When do they expect to decide ?
    5. When do they expect to announce ?

    I assume we are all in dark on this stuff which is why we respond to flight schedules etc. Seems to me it is not out of the question for IU to at least lay out the schedule give or take 3 weeks on the end

  • BrianK

    Lol more like TMZ-ish when we start spottin gindividually alumni in different states and reporting them then it's stalkerish. Oh on that note I saw…..well nvm .

  • JerryCT

    I contacted Homeland Security to assist us. Thought it might help.

    Now I am on their WATCH LIST but our committee is not

  • easy

    Beats me, someone on a forum has been and posts where the plane has been. It really doesn't meant much. Like I said Sampson was met in Houston, so it's tough to figure much from the location of the plane anyway. Just fun to think about.

  • easy

    TONY BENNETT UPDATE:

    Money talks

    By Andy Katz
    ESPN.com

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Washington State athletic director Jim Sterk is expecting the suitors to come calling. He isn't certain Indiana will make an effort, but he won't be surprised if the Hoosiers make a run at Washington State's most coveted asset: men's basketball coach Tony Bennett.

    A year ago, after Bennett led the Cougars to a second-place Pac-10 finish, 26 wins and a second-round NCAA tournament appearance — all after being picked to finish last in the league — Sterk went on the offensive. He bumped Bennett's salary from a league-low $400,000 to $800,000 after Bennett was named the national coach of the year in his first season.

    Thursday night, as the Cougars were being blown out by North Carolina in the East Regional semifinals, Sterk said he would make every effort to improve the program. He said he didn't anticipate Bennett asking for more money for himself but possibly for the assistants. The AD said he would do everything in his power to improve their salary situation.

    Tony Bennett

    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Was Thursday's loss the last game on the Wazzu sideline for the highly coveted Tony Bennett? The Cougs hope not.
    Travel for the team out of remote Pullman, and especially for Bennett when he is recruiting, is also a major issue. Nearby Gonzaga takes charter planes for road trips, and Bulldogs coach Mark Few has said on a number of occasions how beneficial that is to their program. The Cougars desperately want the same to remain competitive.

    Meanwhile, Bennett said after the loss to the Tar Heels that he purposely hasn't thought about other schools. He said he loves Pullman and understands there will be a retooling situation at hand with the departures of seniors Derrick Low, Kyle Weaver and Robbie Cowgill. But it's clear that if Indiana were to call, he would have to listen, considering the stature of the job and his roots in the Midwest. Pac-10 competitor Cal could also make a run at Bennett. It would be hard for Bennett to move within the league, but Cal has always been an easier job than Washington State. Bennett doesn't expect to be courted by LSU, which is located in Baton Rouge, where his wife Laurel was raised.

    Bennett said he's not chasing any jobs. Sterk said he wants to be as proactive as possible in order to keep his young coach.

    As the clock wound down Thursday night, Sterk reflected on what the seniors and Bennett have meant to the university.

    “Washington State was really, really down,” Sterk said. “They all came here and made a difference and made 130,000 Cougar alumni care about basketball.”

  • JerryCT

    I heard Myles Brand scrambled his own fleet of F-16s to tail the committee, looking for more infractions

  • BrianK

    Dixons is from Boston and not sure abou Thad's.

  • BrianK

    1.They made a list but nobody has ever seen it.
    2. No idea just guessing what it is.
    3. There ha been a couple rumors in the press that IU asaked permission to alk to a couple people.
    4. No idea but hopefully soon.
    5. Same as above

  • easy

    Not a bad idea. I'd believe it.

  • easy

    Cool thanks. How do you even find that out?

  • BrianK

    Nah he would just try to shoot us down. But the super secret planes we got from Area 51 that Cuban paid for would kill them. In the mean time Isaiah is distractin Brnad's wife while visiting NCAA offices

  • BrianK

    I know some people who know some people

  • BrianK

    Wow I suck at typing.

  • BrianK

    Anyone know how much Bennett's buyout is?

  • So let me get this straight. Rick Barnes loves his situation and makes a ton of money. He would need to be blown away to come to IU…

    but he would be a backup candidate?

    Personally, Barnes is one of those coaches you get in touch with and ask if he might be interested. “Hey Rick, just wanted to see if you might be interested, we understand, but you know, had to ask.”

  • easy

    Who said he'd be a backup candidate?

  • easy

    Haven't read anything about it so it's either really small (not big enough to be a factor), or non-existent.

  • BrianK

    He originally had like 50k until they redid his contract last year and were supposed to bump it up. Never heard how much though.

  • easy

    Then I'd assume they doubled that, since they double the rest. Still better than Miller's buyout!

  • Also, Jay Wright's not in Philly. He's probably having a walk through right now with Villanova in Detroit.

  • Tony's probably still in Charlotte. I don't know WSU's travel schedule, but I'm sure that they didn't get on the plane last night to fly back. It'd be a couple of days before they head off to Wazzu.

  • I'll just add what I know of the Barnes situation.

    I live in Durham, NC, and I hear all the time how badly NC State covets Rick Barnes. Now, last go 'round, NC State might have talked to Barnes…I'm not sure. They talked to everyone in the country about their coaching vacancy. I heard then that the timing wasn't right for Barnes, but that he would not have an issue coming back to the Carolinas to coach at what is sometimes termed a “basketball school”. So, even though everything is nice and happy in Austin, there is a chance that Barnes can be lured away, so even though he's expensive, he might like the idea of being a big coach at a big school. Both of his big time gigs have been at “football schools” in Clemson and now Texas, so I wouldn't doubt that he'd love a chance to be the head guy at a basketball school like IU. Perhaps, also, he would prefer to buy a shirt that wasn't orange.

    This is all conjecture based on what I know of the NC State situation. In fact, NC State fans already want to get him to come and replace the mess they have now. Granted, NC State might be a little easier to lure him away from Texas than Indiana would since he was born in North Carolina.

  • TexasHoosier

    Barnes is one of the best coaches in the country in my opinion. I just graduated from IU but grew up and now live back in Austin. We were close family friends to the Barnes' growing up and I know he is not leaving Texas. My dad (IU grad) saw him the other night out walking his dog and stopped to talk to him about the upcoming Big12 tourney and NCAA tourney. He then mentioned that IU was probably going to be calling his way about the new opening. Barnes said that IU already had come calling and he proceeded to go into a long explanation of why he has the best coaching job in the country. There is very little pressure on the basketball team here because clearly it is football country. Last year when Kentucky came to him about their coaching position, he got a nice offer from them which Barnes then turned to put the pressure back on UT. As a result, this year, every road game except A&M and Baylor were privately chartered on a plane. He's in total control of AD and the coaching position in Austin for a long while.

  • easy

    Thanks for the info.

  • JamesHardy

    I read somewhere (can't remember exactly where…but it was a legit media outlet) that his buyout was in the $500K range.

  • JamesHardy

    Nothing personal…but this is a relief. Just not a big fan of Barnes. He might be a great guy which I'm sure he is, but not someone I envision driving the Hoosier Hummer H3 around B-town.

  • The post did:

    “If the first couple of priorities fall through for the “blue ribbon” search committee, perhaps Barnes could get a look.”

  • The post did:

    “If the first couple of priorities fall through for the “blue ribbon” search committee, perhaps Barnes could get a look.”