Purdue head coach Matt Painter, who has led the Boilermakers to four straight 25-win seasons, is meeting with Missouri officials in Florida today to discuss their recently vacated head coaching job. The John Purdue Club is in a tizzy over his potential departure, even though this scenario seems more representative of a typical "show me the money" two-step than of Painter's desire to leave his alma mater.
"Matt wants a situation where he will be able to make a run for a national championship," said former Purdue coach Gene Keady. "The administration here has to step up and help him."
Purdue has reportedly already made its "help" offer, and today, according to Midwest Sports Fans, the Athletics Department went to the boosters and provided a unique storyline for Painter's decision. Senior Associate AD Nancy Cross writes:
Dear John Purdue Club Members:
Thanks for the outpouring of support for Matt Painter and for your concern for our Purdue men's basketball program.
In an effort to allay many of your concerns and dispel much of the misinformation by "unnamed sources", Athletics Director Morgan Burke has asked me to share with each of you that he is working diligently with President France Córdova and our Board of Trustees to ensure that Matt remains our head coach for many years to come.
Proactively they have made an investment in Matt that was communicated last evening, clearly reinforcing their continued commitment to him and to our championship program. They did not wait to counter anyone else's offer. It is my hope that the words and actions of our President, our Board and Morgan will encourage Matt, Jerri and their family to remain with Purdue.
Personally, I have been overwhelmed with the number of e-mails pledging to join the John Purdue Club or increase support. Ironically, I believe we would not be in this situation had more than 11% of our current membership participated in the Mackey Challenge and more than 150 of our nearly 9,000 members recruited at least one new member. More of the Big Ten television revenues could have been allocated for compensation for the basketball coaching staff members and less toward the critical path of updating Mackey Arena.
As a self-supporting university auxiliary, we can spend only what we raise, so everyone's participation will ensure that we retain Matt and provide championship-quality experiences for every single one of our Boilermaker student-athletes.
Thanks for your continued loyal support and passionate commitment….stay tuned!
BOILER UP, HAMMER DOWN, and HAIL PURDUE!
There's no official rule list for the college coaching blame game, but if it did exist, number one might be, "don't blame the people who give you their money for the departure of someone who wants more money" (I'd also add, for the general public, "try not to use sporadic caps-lock in an email sign-off"). But I'm no expert in reverse psychology.
Matt Painter to meet with Mizzou [ESPN]
Purdue fans: if Matt Painter goes to Missouri, it's your fault! Signed, Purdue Athletic Department [Midwest Sports Fans]