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Jeff Goodman Interview

The Drive with Josh Graham / Josh Graham
The Truth Network Radio
April 30, 2020 3:29 pm

Jeff Goodman Interview

The Drive with Josh Graham / Josh Graham

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April 30, 2020 3:29 pm

College basketball insider Jeff Goodman joined The Drive with Josh Graham to discuss the legal ramifications of firing Danny Manning, why Steve Forbes was the pick for Wake Forest, and more. 

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The man who's broken most of the Wake Forest basketball news in the last week, and had Steve Forbes as the front runner all along, is Jeff Goodman from Stadium. Jeff is kind enough to be here with us now. And Jeff, I understand Steve Forbes knew John Curry back in their days at Tennessee.

When John was the associate AD there. How much do you believe that relationship with Forbes to be the difference maker and him being Wake's guy? Huge.

Absolutely huge. I mean, he knew him. He knew him.

You know, and I think again, he trusted him. While a lot of people would say that Steve Forbes is a little bit of an outside the box hire for Wake. Because he came from, you know, he's been in junior college, recruited a lot of junior college kids.

You're not going to do that at Wake. I think ultimately, Curry was, he felt good about the fact that Forbes wasn't reliant on JUCO kids. That he could go the high school route. That he had enough contacts and enough confidence in him that, again, he could recruit a lot of different types of kids and, you know, could go transfers. Transfers are going to be the hard thing at Wake though. It's not easy.

You lose a lot of credits from what I've heard. Kids transferring into Wake is much harder than getting in out of high school. The coaches that I spoke to in the last week when I brought up candidates, they all raved about Forbes. I've called him the coach's coach.

They've talked to localize it. They talk about him the same way when you ask coaches about Bob McKillip. They rave about him at Davidson. But the concerns are, aside from what you're mentioning, the JUCO stuff, which I'm not that terribly concerned about because career assistant, he recruited at Tennessee, he recruited at other big places. He doesn't have a background in the Carolinas and he doesn't have experience coaching at a private institution despite his long career as an assistant. So, aside from knowing Curry, what do you think of it as a fit? I think he'll figure out a way to get it done.

I'm not all that concerned. I think Wes Miller would have been a good hire too. I just think, again, Forbes is so good with people. I think he's good. He can coach. He can recruit. He's good with people.

If you've got those three things, you're not talking about a 30-year-old here. He's been around the block a little bit, so I think he can figure it out. He's got long-standing contacts in what he did at ETSU. From his standpoint, a lot of people would say, well, why is Steve Forbes taking this job? A year from now, he's going to get a job that fits him better.

Maybe a Clemson or a Georgia Tech or whatever. Another job that he can get juice in. But I think if you're Steve Forbes, you're thinking to yourself two things. Number one, you're taking Wake at the right time.

It's been 10 years of kind of abysmal performance, but it's a good job. We know that. You can win at Wake. You can finish in the top six or seven in the ACC consistently at Wake.

If you do that, you're in the NCAA tournament. I think number two was everything he went through. Being fired at Tennessee, having to go coach for 60 grand at Northwest Florida State, understanding that things can change quickly. You never know.

You take advantage of the opportunities they're given to you because I saw how quickly that stuff could be taken away, so how can I turn down a job like Wake Forest? Jeff Goodman with us from Stadium. How involved do you believe Thad Modded to be in this search? Because I know he told you a few years ago that he turned down Georgia and quite a bit of money because he just wasn't ready to dive back in. Yeah, I think again for Thad it's got to be the perfect, perfect job. I know they kind of just kicked the wheels on him, kicked the tires on him a little bit. Same thing with Tommy Amaker. I don't think either move forward at all. I think it was kind of like, hey, what do you think of these guys?

And oh, by the way, are you interested? And I actually think Forbes is better than both of them for Wake. It's a major rebuilding job, major rebuilding job. Forbes has the energy. I don't think Thad has the energy.

I don't. I think, you know, again, a Butler, a Notre Dame, if those two were to open up at some point, you know, maybe. For Amaker, I think he's pretty happy at Harvard. It's going to take a lot to get him out of Harvard. And oh, by the way, it wasn't like he killed it at Michigan when he was at the high major level.

No, no, no. And the other half of your breaking news today, aside from breaking the Steve Forbes stuff, Wake Forest, this is what you said right after the hire. It believes that they don't have to pay Danny Manning the $15 million he had on an existing deal because, quote, he failed to meet certain criteria. Now, a lot of people are curious what that might be. What did you make of that headline? Did it surprise you?

I heard this, like, on Saturday, believe it or not. I've been trying to get the details of exactly what it is in the contract that they're trying to dispute. The only thing I've been told is part of it will be retention, right? All the transfers and everything like that. But a lot of that didn't affect their APR necessarily, so I don't think it's linked to APR.

I don't know all the specifics. All I know is that, again, one of the reasons why John Kerry was able to make this move, because everybody was shocked at the timing, right? I mean, that was the biggest thing. You know, guys have saved their jobs right now because of the pandemic. You're not going to fire a guy. But one of the reasons, one of the main reasons Kerry was able to do it was because his legal team obviously told him, hey, listen, we believe you're only going to have to, we're only going to have to pay Danny Manning five, six, seven million, whatever that number is. And oh, by the way, making three million this coming year, I'll save you a million plus. Whoever I hire, we're not going to pay three million.

So he couldn't get a Thad Motta or Tommy Emicker, I think, even if he wanted to, because the number would have had to start with at least a two, maybe even a three to get a guy like that. As I think you saw on Saturday, I asked Kerry about the buyout. And that's when he gave the answer about the economic support, the decision. But also at the end, he said, don't believe the reports you see in the media about 15 million. What do you make about the $15 million figure today? No, I know his can't believe they're owed 15. I know that, you know, that's the fully guaranteed aspect of the deal.

But again, I think Wake is using certain verbiage in that certain things that he didn't perform. And, you know, while he was there, the performance based aspects that they're claiming that they're not going to have to pay him the full 15. So I honestly think it's going to go either to court or they're going to come to some sort of agreement. But I haven't seen the actual contract. It's hard because obviously it's a private school.

So you're not going to be able to get back that contract to see exactly what the verbiage is. How do you think this is going to play in the coaching community? Because I think it worked out good for Wake that, hey, you get your guy and Steve Forbes and then this headline drops. Am I wrong to think that this headline where, hey, Wake's trying to get out from underneath this buyout number is going to play well with the coaches?

So funny. You know, I thought about that because, again, I thought about tweeting this for like three or four days. I'm like, I could have tweeted the tweet I put out earlier.

I could have tweeted on Saturday. But again, I was trying to get a little bit more info. And I thought about it like how people are going to react. On one hand, they're going to say, well, at least, you know, we're not going to have to pay the 15 million potentially because that's a huge number right now with where we are with the country and everything like that. And number two, you know, they could be thinking like, well, you know, Danny, like, why are you going to screw Danny Manning here? Like he's a high, high, high character guy just paying what he's owed. UConn's doing this a little bit with Kevin Ollie. Now, Ollie had NCAA violations, too, but UConn's doing it to one of their own.

And they're getting crucified for it because, again, some of it is semantics. And it's just going to be interesting to see what that contract stipulates. And legally, who's entitled to their money? Is Danny Manning entitled to his 15 or is he only entitled to five, six, seven or they just say, you know what, there's a lot of ambiguity with this. We're going to meet somewhere in between. I'll close on this, Jeff.

Great reporting as always. Do you believe that Wake Forest secured 15 million dollars, that if they have to pay it, that they have the funds to do so? Well, they have to. I mean, you can't do it without understanding that, hey, in worst case scenario, and we have to pay the 15, you know, my guess is obviously it's going to be spread out over a period of time. You're not going to have to pay him, you know, 15 and one lump sum.

So can you do that? And again, if you do that, think about it. OK, so Manning made three million this year and, you know, you're paying Forbes 1.55 or something like that. Let's say that's the number.

I think it'll be somewhere in that 15, 17 range. You know, at least you're not hiring somebody for another three million a year. You already were paying in that three million.

So really, you have to raise that 1.5 somehow or try to raise it or take the hit. Jeff, thank you so much for the time. I know you're busy.

And congrats again on the great work as always. The other part of that real quick, real quick is Ken Forbes put more people in the seat next year. So all the money you're losing by nobody showing up to weight games, you're thinking we might be able to make up some of that with the hiring of Forbes, with the excitement, even if we're not as good. Sometimes people just get excited about the novelty of a new coach. They want to see it. You get some more season ticket holders, you know, bumping up.

Who knows? So I think they're thinking that way, too, is it was going to be a last year this year. Let's give Forbes a chance. And then you got the May 20th deadline, the waiver vote of the one time transfer waiver. And if that goes through, which I don't think it's going to. But if it goes through, I think Forbes could go after some guys right now. There'll be a lot more guys on the transfer waiver if that does go through. And let's not forget the economics might be different where the ACC Network money is going to start to hit. And that's going to make things maybe potentially easier, easier in that regard.

And also, I think Wake Forest, you're not in a pandemic, hopefully, in one or two years when everything gets litigated. And who knows, maybe Danny doesn't want to fight and he might just settle for the seven and a half and stay away from court talk. I'd fight. I'd fight for a while.

If I believe it and my lawyers or my legal team is telling me, hey, you're entitled to it, I'm not giving up a penny yet. Not yet. Shoot him a follow on Twitter, as I'm sure you probably already are, at Goodman Hoops. Follow his stuff at Stadium as well. Jeff, look forward to catching up somewhere down the line. Thanks for this. You got it.

Take care, man. A lot of stuff to react there later this hour. Les Johns going to join us from Demon Deacon Digest as well. Your thoughts are welcome on Wake Forest's new hire, Steve Forbes, and also the Danny Manning aspect of this as well regarding Wake's buyout. 336-777-1600. We're taking your calls. And you can also tweet us at Sports Hub Triad. More Wake Forest coverage to come on a Thursday drive.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-11 21:15:43 / 2023-02-11 21:21:13 / 6

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