It’s time for your daily update on all things Matt Painter.
In today’s episode, we discuss: Painter’s Missouri/Purdue decision timetable; an unexpected apology from Ms. Passive Aggressive Nancy Cross; the Purdue student “rally”; and what Robbie Hummel will do if his coach heads west.
Update: I saw this report from Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch literally five minutes after making this post.
Uh oh Boiler fans.
Update: But then a few hours later we found out that the St. Louis Post-Dispatch was either full of it or misled or that Matt Painter had a last second change of heart. He is now reportedly staying at Purdue.
Matt Painter’s Decision
According to Jeff Rabjohns of the Indianapolis Star, via USAToday.com, Matt Painter is expected to decide on Wednesday (today) whether or not he will leave for Missouri or stay at his alma mater Purdue. Here is the key bit of info regarding the deals Painter is pondering:
On Tuesday, Painter met with Missouri officials while on vacation in Florida.
Purdue officials made an offer to Painter on Monday night and enhanced it Tuesday to include an increase in salary to the $2 million-a-year range and provide additional funds for staffing and day-to-day operations of the program.
Of course Purdue officials enhanced their offer to Painter. As I explained on Twitter last night, Painter holds all the cards here. Purdue needs him far more than Painter needs to Purdue.
With that said, I think Painter wants to stay at Purdue, but he needs assurances that the athletic department will a) pay him a salary commensurate with his ability and success relative to other Big Ten coaches; and b) give him the resources to win – including competitive salaries for assistants and more money for operations, which I would assume includes recruiting.
A “person who knows things” (to use a lame Bill Simmons device) told me that Painter met face to face with Purdue reps well into last night. I have to assume that cooler heads are going to prevail here and that Painter will stay.
For the record, every Purdue fan I’ve talked to has applauded Painter for taking this opportunity to leverage Purdue into giving the basketball program more support. Assuming he stays, I highly doubt there will be any hard feelings from anyone – except against the athletic department itself.
And perhaps that’s why this happened…
Nancy Cross Apologizes
Remember the letter I posted yesterday in which Purdue Associate AD Nancy Cross basically told members of the John Purdue Club that they were the reason Painter might end up leaving? Well after being thoroughly embarrassed on the Interwebs yesterday, it appears that Cross had a change of heart.
Today, another email sat in the inboxes of John Purdue Club members, and it apologized for the hasty, ill-timed remarks in the previous day’s email:
Purdue Fans Stage “Rally”
In the midst of yesterday’s frenzy about Painter, a group of Purdue students tried to organize a rally to show their support for their coach. Let’s just say that, for Purdue’s sake, I hope the athletic department is more convincing in their pleases for Painter to stay.
From the Purdue Exponent:
Andrew Newsome, a freshman in the College of Engineering, said it was disappointing to see such a small turnout when there was so much potential to make the students’ voices heard.
“I expected to see a lot of people come out who love the team and Painter,” he said. “This isn’t what you want Painter to see.”
The low turnout was especially surprising after over 300 Facebook users said they would attend.
Reports I’ve read put the total number of students between 11-15. Neither of those numbers is missing a zero at the end.
I’ve been pretty even-keeled and non-combative throughout this whole thing despite my staunch IU allegiances, and have even said that I want Painter to stay despite the fact that it would destroy Purdue if he left. But 11 people at a rally? Come on. Heck, 300 seems terribly small to me and that’s just a Facebook group. How were there not thousands?
For comparison’s sake, only a few hours after it was announced that Coach Knight had been fired over 5,000 IU students were at the steps of Assembly Hall. That’s how you do a rally. But then again, we’ve always been a little more nuts about our basketball in Bloomington.
What Would Robbie Hummel Do?
Finally, let’s quickly discuss Robbie Hummel. There has been a lot of speculation that if Painter leaves for Missouri that Hummel would go with him to play his senior year with the only college coach he’s known. I don’t know the exact transfer rules that would govern such a decision, but apparently it is possible. However, that same “person who knows things” mentioned above told me it wouldn’t matter.
He/she said that Hummel loves Purdue, has already applied for grad school, and wouldn’t leave. I cannot confirm any of that, and I only post it because this source has been spot-on about everything that has happened with Matt Painter so far. Take that as you will.
Whenever Painter makes a decision, I’ll be sure to post something about here or on Twitter.
Meanwhile, Tom Crean is probably somewhere locking up a top 5 recruiting class for 2015 right now.