Expect an announcement next week--sometime before the Final Four--that Texas A&M is going to pony up and do what it takes to keep basketball coach Mark Turgeon from straying to
Athletic director Bill Byrne has publicly stated that it is his job to keep Turgeon, who not only has produced three NCAA Tournament teams and has recruited well, but also has become more and more popular within the Aggie community.
I think we’ll see evidence of that in a matter of days with an announcement that pending A&M board approval in April, Turgeon will receive a new deal that will bump his $1.2 million salary to $1.5 or beyond.
Now that may not seem like a huge boost, but factor in the tough economic times and from here it looks like the genuine show of faith and commitment it is meant to be.
The board met Thursday and Friday and I’m told after some discussion approved the salary bump. Given the growing string of four record-setting crowds at Reed Arena this season and continued support growth, the move makes financial sense, even in tough times. Especially when you consider what it might take to hire another coach with Turgeon’s growing credentials and the possible momentum interruption given a starting-over scenario.
I’m also told that Turgeon has no desire to leave, if the university will step up and show its continued desire to keep the program in the forefront of the Big 12.
Expect them to do just that.--Mike Jones.