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BC closing in on new football coach

Posted by Mark Blaudschun, Globe Staff  January 11, 2009 10:25 AM

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Boston College athletic director Gene DeFilippo should be finished with the interview process,with an announcement of a new football coach for BC early this week, perhaps as soon as Monday, barring any unforseen developments.

DeFilippo has focused on a core group of BC insiders currently involved with the program. He took care of those interviews on Thursday and Friday when he talked to offensive coordinator Steve Logan, defensive coordinator Frank Spaziani, assistant head coach Jack Bicknell Jr., and assistant athletic director of football operations Barry Gallup, all of whom had expressed an interest in the job after DeFilippo fired Jeff Jagodzinski on Wednesday.

Of that group, Spaziani is the clear leader and Bicknell is second.

With the internal interviews completed, DeFilippo then focused on a core group of outside candidates, making calls and setting up interviews. According to sources familiar with the process, DeFilippo talked to Richmond coach Mike London and was considering a few others, but was leaning toward making an internal hire, which would seem to favor Spaziani.

Although Florida offensive coordinator Steve Addazio was on the list, the timing may be difficult since Addazio has been in the hospital for the past few days, dealing with an an infection on his surgically replaced knee.

During festivities Sunday celebrating Florida's national championship, Gator coach Urban Meyer encouraged BC to ask for permission to talk to Addazio, whom he labeld a "great coach."

And while Skip Holtz's name also was thought to be on BC's list of potential candidates, East Carolina athletic director Terry Holland said Sunday night that no one had asked permission to talk to any of his head coaches, which would seem to knock Holtz from consideration.

London has impressive credentials, including a BC connection from his stint on Tom O'Brien's staff 10 years ago. Addazio is known as a great recruiter, with an aggressive style and New England connections, coming off a team that just won the national championship.

Addazio also has a connection with DeFilippo through his son John, who worked on Tyrone Willingham's staff at Notre Dame with Addazio.

Whether DeFilippo slows down the hiring process waiting for Addazio to recover remains to be seen. With the sense of urgency that BC has expressed, however, it seems unlikely they will go in that direction.

The decision DeFilippo must now make is whether to stick with a solid BC connection, which Spaziani and Bicknell would provide, or move outside the program, which would probably also create even more shuffling of the staff.

It is unlikely that Spaziani will stay on staff if he is passed over for the head job for a second time.

The other question is a matter of money. If Holtz is hired, BC most likely would have to pay a buyout as part of the deal. In addition, the new coach would receive a minimum five-year contract, with a total compensation package of $1 million per year the most likely starting point.

No matter what DeFilippo does, the process should be over in the next 48 hours.

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