It appears Minnesota has found it’s man. Or another man if it’s first choice backs away.
While the FOX television affiliate in Minneapolis is reporting that Western Michigan’s P.J. Fleck has tentatively reached an agreement to become Minnesota’s next head coach, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune writes that the university “was closing in on a deal to bring… Fleck to the Gophers on Thursday night, with an eye toward a Friday announcement, but the contract had yet to be finalized.” The station couched the current state of the situation as Fleck is expected to be named the Gophers next head coach, while the newspaper described it as closing in on a deal.
It’s being reported that Fleck’s Minnesota deal would be for six years and total in the neighborhood of $21 million. In 2016, Fleck made $800,000 at WMU; the coach had reached an agreement in principle on a new contract with his current employer that would reportedly double that compensation, but hadn’t signed off on it as the two sides haggled over pay for his assistant coaches.
Should talks with Fleck fall through, the Star-Tribune describes former LSU head coach Les Miles as “an interesting Plan B” and “legitimate fallback option.” Multiple media outlets have reported that Miles met with university officials Wednesday; that meeting bled into Thursday.
That “fallback option,” of course, was fired by the Tigers during the 2016 regular season but still has a national championship and two SEC titles on a résumé that shows a career won-loss record of 141-55.