As with any breakup, Rutgers and Greg Schiano are now down to the all-important business of telling everyone they know it was the other side’s fault. But a leak Monday to NJ.com shows that, as with any breakup, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.
Schiano’s camp was quick to get the word out Sunday that the breakdown of negotiations between the Knights and their former coach was not about money, and a term sheet circulated among the Rutgers board of governors and obtained by NJ.com shows that was partially true.
The highlights of what Schiano wanted, according to the site:
— An 8-year contract worth $4 million per year, with $400,000 retention bonuses after Years 4 and 6.
— A buyout starting at $25.2 million.
— The freedom to walk without penalty if the school did not improve its football facilities by 2023.
— Unlimited private jet use.
— A staff salary pool starting at $7.7 million, increasing by at least 3 percent per year.
— Other standard bonuses and perks common to coaching contracts at the Power 5 level.
Rutgers offered Schiano a 6-year contract averaging $4 million per year, which shows that the sides agreed on the annual salary, but Schiano sought a buyout that was worth more than the entire contract the school offered.
So, yeah, it wasn’t about the money, but it was about the money.
In reality, the leak is useful for both sides. Schiano doesn’t need the job, and he certainly doesn’t need to go 0-9 or 1-8 in Big Ten play every year. His demands were a lot for Rutgers — a school that still isn’t receiving a full slice of the Big Ten pie and won’t until 2021 — but they were entirely reasonable for a coach with his leverage and his résumé.
Rutgers, meanwhile, can re-start its search by signaling to candidates that it’s willing to pay its new coach far more than it paid the ousted Chris Ash.