There were reports earlier in the week that Rutgers hoped to make an announcement on a new head coach Wednesday, the 150th anniversary of the playing of the first-ever college football game. At this point, it doesn’t appear that’ll come to fruition.
With buzz continuing to grow about a Greg Schiano-Rutgers reunion, the former RU head coach met with university officials in Columbus, Ohio, for several hours Tuesday regarding the opening, nj.com‘s Steve Politi has reported. Instead of coming out of that meeting with its next head football coach, though, the university headed back to Piscataway dealing with what Politi described as “significant demands.”
What those “significant demands” are is unknown at the moment, according to Politi. From the report:
Schiano is believed to want significant improvements to the football infrastructure in Piscataway, including an indoor practice facility that is a common recruiting tool on every rival Big Ten campus and would likely move the team out the existing headquarters at the Hale Center.
It is likely that any project of that magnitude would need high-level university approval before it can be included in a contract with the coach. The next football coach’s contract will need Board of Governors approval, and the university would presumably need to call for a “special meeting” to approve any deal.
Rutgers recently upgraded its football locker rooms, weight room and outdoor practice fields with contributions from donors, but the price tag on field houses has soared into nine-digit territory at other conference schools.
In what direction the university will head is unclear. Butch Jones, who interviewed for the job late last week, is believed to be the backup plan if the Schiano talks implode, the website reported.
It’s clear, though, that Schiano’s return to the Scarlet Knights is the university’s top option.
In 11 seasons from 2001-11, Schiano went 68-67 as the head coach at Rutgers. In the seven-plus seasons since Schiano left for the NFL, the Scarlet Knights have gone 35-56 and are 13-43 since the start of the 2015 season; in the 17 years prior to his arrival in Piscataway, they went 67-114-2.
After leaving Rutgers, the 53-year-old Schiano spent two decidedly unsuccessful seasons (7-9 in 2012, 4-12 in 2013) as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Schiano served as the defensive coordinator at Ohio State from 2016-18 before being replaced as part of the post-Urban Meyer staff shakeup by new OSU head coach Ryan Day. In the two years in between the NFL and OSU stints, Schiano coached at a Tampa preparatory school.