Any misgivings about Maryland being able to attract a top-tier coach were just put to rest, because they're ready to throw around SEC money. At least, if the Dallas Morning News is to be believed.
June Jones, as was noted in the earlier post, reportedly met with in regards to Maryland's opening at head coach. He also withdrew himself from consideration shortly after. The Dallas Morning News is bringing some extravagant figures to the table about how much they were willing to pay:
Jones informed SMU athletic director Steve Orsini and president R. Gerald Turner this morning that he wanted to stay at SMU, despite Maryland's willingness to pay, with incentives, around $3.5 million, according to two sources close to the SMU program, an eye-popping increase from the $2 million Jones already makes annually at SMU.
This is worthy of a few grains of salt: for one, it's coming from SMU sources, and two, it's coming on the heels of Jones returning. Talking big money can only help Jones get more money and support from the administration, and it makes SMU look good enough to hold onto their guy even in the face of millions.
That figure also includes "incentives", which is an important word: the actual pay or salary may be significantly lower. (Even with that, I'd expect it still be $2.5mil at least. Incentives aren't usually that hefty.) So yeah, the number may or may not be accurate. (And for the record, the report never says that Jones was offered the job.)
If it is accurate, Maryland is pretty obviously ready to go big-time here. No one is off-limits with money like that. It's even enough money to keep whoever they hire from leaping at any but the biggest of job offers, should they have success. Suddenly, everyone is on the board. If true - again, if - Kevin Anderson is throwing around Monopoly money.
I would imagine, for the record, that Mike Leach wouldn't demand that much money. He can't find another job and will have some dough coming in soon from Texas Tech and maybe even ESPN. But if they decide to go another route, they have a big carrot to dangle.