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Eagle football program in turmoil

Posted by Mark Blaudschun, Globe Staff  January 5, 2009 01:57 AM

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Boston College football coach Jeff Jagodzinski has put himself in an almost impossible situation and one that looks like it will cost him his job. Jagodzinski is scheduled to interview with the New York Jets for the head coaching job later today.
ESPN originally reported that BC officials told Jagodzinski that he will be fired if he interviews for the opening created when Eric Mangini was fired last week. Other reports have said that a clause in Jagodzinski's million dollar a year plus contract prohibits Jagodzinski from interviewing for an NFL job during his first three years at BC, which would be considered grounds for dismissal. Other reports said that BC had already fired the second year coach..
On Sunday, Jagodzinski told his staff that he might have to deal with an ultimatum on Monday--presumably meaning that he would be fired if he did interview--and that the issue would be resolved by Tuesday.
What seems clear is that Jagodzinski's career at BC is over no matter what happens. A bond of trust built between Jagodzinski and BC athletic director Gene DeFilippo, who hired him, had been breached. DeFilippo had insisted on Saturday afternoon that published reports of Jagodzinski meeting with the Jets were inaccurate. He learned later that day that Jagodzinski had indeed talked to the Jets.
When contacted Sunday night, DeFilippo refused to comment, repeating that Jagodzinski had taken the initiative and any comment would have to come from him. Jagodzinski did not return phone calls on Sunday.
Even if the Jets deal falls through for Jagodzinski, it seems hard to believe that he can simply resume his duties with BC as if nothing had happened, which means an official announcement confirming a termination could come sometime today.
If that does happen, look for DeFilippo to fill the void quickly. BC is in the middle of a recruiting season that is not going well by most accounts. DeFilippo could make a quick in-house move by elevating offensive coordinator Steve Logan, assistant head coach Jack Bicknell Jr. or defensive coordinator Frank Spaziani. All have head coaching credentials.
He could also go to the short list of coaching candidates that all athletic directors have in their desks. But that would mean an entire upheaval of a program which can ill afford a major jolt.
What did seem clear is that a 9-win season which had been regarded as a success despite the loss to Virginia Tech in the ACC title game and Vanderbilt in the Music City Bowl now has ended with the program in turmoil.
Which is not good news for the Eagles.

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