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College Football notebook

West Virginia sues Rodriguez over $4 million buyout

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Associated Press / December 28, 2007

West Virginia University's Board of Governors sued former coach Rich Rodriguez yesterday to collect a $4 million buyout of his contract with the school.

The lawsuit, filed in Monongalia County Circuit Court, says the university believes Rodriguez doesn't intend to abide by the contract.

The buyout clause requires Rodriguez to pay $4 million to WVU over a two-year period, with one-third of the total due 30 days after his employment's termination. His resignation was effective Dec. 19.

Rodriguez's agent, Mike Brown, declined to comment last night on the lawsuit.

Rodriguez went to Michigan after seven seasons in Morgantown, where he led West Virginia to four Big East championships and a 60-26 record.

West Virginia officials decided to ask a court to enforce the contract after supporters of Rodriguez questioned its validity and the coach did not disavow those statements, said Alex Macia, vice president of legal affairs and legal counsel for the university.

The replacements?

West Virginia continued its search for a replacement for Rodriguez, reportedly interviewing Illinois offensive coordinator Mike Locksley and Central Michigan head coach Butch Jones.

Locksley denied the report by The Sporting News that he met with Mountaineers officials Wednesday. "That's crack media at its best," Locksley said. "I don't know where the story came from."

ESPN.com reported Jones interviewed yesterday for the post for the second time, this time with school president Mike Garrison. Former Auburn coach Terry Bowden and Florida assistant Doc Holliday are also said to be candidates.

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