Report: LSU negotiated with Jimbo Fisher but money was an issue
LSU did indeed enter contract negotiations with Jimbo Fisher before ultimately backtracking and announcing they were sticking with Les Miles as their head football coach. But money and support for Miles were the two biggest obstacles preventing the school from hiring Fisher, according to a report.
The Baton Rouge Advocate says LSU and Fisher were in talks about a contract to have the Florida State head coach replace Miles. Fisher has a $5 million buyout and would command more than $5 million a year as a coach, plus the cost to hire him a satisfactory staff would have been around $5 million, according to The Advocate. When you combine that with the $15 million it would have cost to buy out Miles, the total to make a coaching switch would have been around $30 million. That’s a hefty price to replace a coach who ultimately has been pretty successful.
LSU boosters had said the $15 million buyout would not be a problem and that they would cover it with private funds. But given the state’s funding and budget issues, approving these moves would have been difficult.
The other issue is that Miles received a lot of support when word leaked about the plans to potentially replace him. The school board was said to be split on the matter. Then state governor Bobby Jindal weighed in and supported Miles, which obviously carried a lot of weight.
The Advocate says the sentiment to keep Miles began to change in the week leading up to the Texas A&M game. Miles went from walking into the game like it might be his last ever home game as LSU’s head coach to winning and being carried off the field by his players (the video was awesome). Then after the game, the school’s athletic director announced they were keeping the coach.
When you come that close to breaking up once, it’s hard to repair a relationship. Things will likely continue to be rocky in Baton Rouge despite Miles being able to hold onto his job for another season.