Welcome to the Friday Feedback, which at long last has the answer to the $25,000 question. Bob Huggins gets a nice little nest egg if he beats Kansas in the regular season, which you (likely) already knew. It’s not a new thing. We learned about it before the start of last season.
But with WVU playing Kansas Saturday, and with the arrangement never really explained, now seemed as good a time as any to get some background.
And we did.
Huggins again directed questions to his attorney. That’s fine. That’s Huggins. I’ve had a bunch of people tell me he just doesn’t concern himself with salary and negotiations and the like. His contract was amended in November 2012, but before that, he wasn’t really sure what his salary was. He knew it was good for him and good for WVU, and that was all that really mattered. I suspect Huggins wasn’t leaning over the table in negotiations and demanding the clause be included, but I was curious if he had plans for the $25,000 (does it go to his charity, does it go do a particular endowment, etc.).
Never got that information.
It wasn’t fruitless, though. Remember last year, when Huggins was asked on a conference call — not the best idea, by the way — about the clause and he said he had nothing to do with it and suggested similar questions go to his attorney? Well, that attorney is his longtime representative, Richard Katz, and Katz confirmed his client’s claim. It was all Katz’s idea, but also something that only came up as “an afterthought” as he and Oliver Luck were wrapping up the amended version.
WVU’s athletic director corroborated that and specifically remembered having to decline a few of Katz’s requests for incentives because of the way the NCAA had evolved to be suspicious of some bonuses related to academics. Then, rather innocently, Katz suggested a bonus for beating the Jayhawks. And that was that.
It’s still quite a story, even if it isn’t particularly incendiary, because I think many people suspected there was some specific motivation. Katz was careful to say the clause really has nothing to do with Kansas and is just another way to reward a good deed. One or two wins is now treated the same, or about the same, as winning coach of the year nationally ($50,000) or in the Big 12 ($30,000).
So it’s not a really big deal, and it’s merely an accessory to everything else that’ll happen tomorrow, but it’s natural to hold our attention because it is unusual. And now, Bill Self will shake the room.
“I think the world of Bob Huggins and consider him a good friend,” Kansas coach Bill Self said. “I’m going to do everything I can to keep money out of his pocket, and if I don’t, I know who’s buying dinner.”
Onto the Feedback. As always, comments appear as posted. In other words, blame it on the dog.
Whose bigs get more shots blocked by the rim than ours?
I can’t imagine anyone would be ahead of the Mountaineers. And then there’s this, which I have to look into, and for which I would welcome help. I met a fan in the airport yesterday — a fan of WVU’s who saw me reading a media guide — and he told me WVU leads the nation in dunks allowed. He was adamant. Said there was a stat online. I can’t find it, but that doesn’t mean I don’t believe it.