Rodriguez meets with Michigan AD about replacing Carr
West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez met with Michigan athletic director Bill Martin on Friday to talk about the Wolverines' coaching job, according to media reports.
Rodriguez and his agent were in Toledo to talk with Martin and university president Mary Sue Coleman, according to Sporting News Radio, which cited unidentifed sources.
The meeting was confirmed to ESPN's Joe Schad on Friday afternoon by a source close to the situation.
Rodriguez, 44, was back in Morgantown on Friday after taking a flight from Ohio, and unwilling to talk about any possible interest in the Michigan job.
"Going to practice. I'm going to practice," he told The Associated Press on Friday, getting into his car after a trip to Toledo.
Rodriguez again refused to discuss Michigan's vacant coaching job on Saturday.
At the opening of a previously scheduled news conference about West Virginia's trip to the Fiesta Bowl, Rodriguez said he would only talk about the game against Oklahoma (No. 4 BCS, No. 3 AP).
"It may be disappointing to you, but I am not going to talk about any rumors or innuendo or jobs or what else is floating out there," Rodriguez said.
"I'm not going to address the rumors or anything of that nature," Rodriguez said. "If any questions are asked about that, the press conference will be over."
The questions about Michigan persisted, and Rodriguez fired back.
"You all have not understood what I just said. One more question and this conference, unfortunately, and you all have been super, but if the questions persist outside of that then this thing will be over," he said.
A reporter then asked whether Rodriguez would coach the team in the Fiesta Bowl.
"You're a tricky guy," Rodriguez said.
Some players indicated Rodriguez hadn't spoken to them about Michigan and that they were under orders to keep quiet.
"I'm not supposed to talk about that. I'm sorry," offensive lineman Ryan Stanchek said Saturday.
West Virginia athletic director Ed Pastilong spoke with Rodriguez on Saturday.
"We talked about general issues within the football program," Pastilong told The Charleston Gazette, declining to be more specific.
Pastilong, who didn't immediately return a telephone message to The Associated Press, told the newspaper "we'll know something very fast" in regard to Rodriguez's decision.
Michigan, which lured basketball coach John Beilein away from West Virginia last April, is looking for a replacement for football coach Lloyd Carr, who announced his retirement Nov. 19 after 13 seasons.
Pastilong said he was unaware Rodriguez, who has a hefty buyout clause in his contract, was in Toledo.
"He has not shared that with me," Pastilong told The Associated Press.
Pastilong would not say whether West Virginia had given Michigan permission to talk to Rodriguez, citing university policy.
When asked further whether he knew Rodriguez was talking to Michigan, Pastilong said, "Rich has not mentioned anything of that nature to me. Secondly, we have a strong commitment with Rich, a strong contract. We're strongly committed to him and he's strongly committed to us.
"I think it would be unusual that he would be doing that without sharing it with us."
Michigan athletic department spokesman Bruce Madej said he was unaware of any talks.
On the day Carr announced he was stepping down, Martin said he hoped to complete the hiring process quickly.
But LSU's Les Miles withdrew from consideration before he was scheduled to meet with Martin and signed a contract extension with the Tigers.
Rutgers' Greg Schiano said last week after being contacted about the Michigan job that he was staying with the Scarlet Knights.
After a 13-9 loss to Pittsburgh in the regular-season finale knocked West Virginia out of the national championship game, Rodriguez said he wasn't going to be on the move.
"The impact of your name being thrown about is sometimes a little overrated. It probably makes for a lot of angst among families and we don't want that," he said. "Sorry but you all are stuck with me here."
Rodriguez has a 60-26 record at West Virginia. The Big East champion Mountaineers (10-2) play No. 3 Oklahoma (11-2) next month in the Fiesta Bowl.
Last December, Rodriguez agreed to a one-year contract extension through 2013 after he turned down a lucrative offer from Alabama. The extension includes a $4 million buyout clause if he leaves before August 2008. That doubles the amount from the previous contract.
Beilein had a $2.5 million buyout clause in his West Virginia contract, but under an agreement with the university he agreed to pay $1.5 million to the WVU Foundation for leaving for Michigan with five years remaining in his contract.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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