|LSU grants Miles permission to talk to Michigan|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 28 November 2007 17:14|
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) -Michigan athletics officials asked for and received permission from LSU to meet with Les Miles about the Wolverines' head football coaching vacancy.|
LSU athletic director Skip Bertman granted the request on condition that Michigan representatives wait until after Saturday's Southeastern Conference championship game in Atlanta before starting negotiations, LSU spokesman Herb Vincent said.
Vincent said Bertman and LSU chancellor Sean O'Keefe also plan to meet with Miles next week to discuss his contract.
``We're trying to get the SEC championship game behind us that's why we're scheduling these things for next week,'' Vincent said.
LSU was not prepared to make a statement about the extent to which the school was prepared to compete with Michigan's offer, should one be made, Vincent said.
``We're just looking forward to the game Saturday and that's the focus of the entire program right now, Saturday's game against Tennessee,'' Vincent said.
Miles, in his third season as LSU coach, went 11-2 his first two years. The Tigers are 10-2 this season and ranked fifth in the AP poll.
Calls and e-mails seeking comment were left with Michigan athletic director Bill Martin on Wednesday afternoon and evening.
Martin, who has not commented on the search since Carr's announcement, interviewed Michigan coordinators Ron English and Mike DeBord earlier this week.
``We're not going to make any comments on the search,'' Michigan spokesman Bruce Madej said Wednesday night.
Miles seems to have everything college football's winningest program is looking for, including ties to the school and the late-great coach Bo Schembechler.
He played at Michigan and was on the coaching staff in Ann Arbor, Mich., where he met his wife.
Last week, though, Miles pleaded with the media to let the topic rest.
Even though Miles appears in a great situation leading the Tigers in a talent-rich area without a competing school nearby, LSU was concerned enough about him bolting for Michigan that it put a specific clause in his contract to make it an expensive move.
In the ``termination by coach'' section of his deal, Michigan is the only other school mentioned. It states that Miles will not seek or accept employment as Michigan's coach. If Miles does leave LSU to coach the Wolverines, he must pay LSU $1.25 million.
Martin has said he is looking for the next Carr, who led Michigan to the 1997 national championship and five Big Ten titles while keeping the school above even suspicions about NCAA violations.
Michigan traditionally has gotten away with paying its football coach less than top of the market rates.
Martin acknowledged the school might have to offer a candidate up to $3 million a season or roughly twice as much as Carr earned annually.
After Carr announced his retirement, Martin said he did not expect it would be difficult to land a coach to lead what Carr told him is the best job in the country.
``Not only because it's Michigan, but because of the renovations we're doing to the Big House and also because we broke ground last Friday morning for our $28 million indoor practice facility,'' Martin said. ``We'll have the finest facilities in the country. We also have patience to work with a coach as he transitions in.''
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