BY MARK GIANNOTTO
Daily Sports Writer
Published April 2, 2007
West Virginia coach John Beilein has accepted an offer to leave Morgantown, W.Va. and become the next Michigan men's basketball coach, according to CBSSportsline.com and FOXSports.com.
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His contract is believed to exceed $1 million per year. In addition, Michigan must pay a $2.5 million buyout from his current deal with West Virginia, a provision that some suggested would be a roadblock in getting a deal done.
That same buyout was the major reason why Beilein didn't leave West Virginia last off-season, when he was offered the head-coaching position at North Carolina State.
"Beilein is a great offensive mind, and I think the program does need new energy," said Rivals.com analyst Jerry Meyer. "As far as the Big Ten goes, (his hiring) is a big advantage for Michigan because he plays a unique style for the conference. I think it will be tough for teams to prepare for."
Beilein's teams play a modified Princeton-style offense predicated on shooting 3-pointers. His West Virginia teams were among the highest scoring in the nation.
Athletic Director Bill Martin led the two-week search with the aid of a four-person advisory committee. The search began after the firing of former coach Tommy Amaker on March 17.
"From my perspective, I think it's a great hire," Meyer said. "His teams are fun to watch play. If he can have some recruiting success, I think he can be very good at Michigan."
A press conference announcing Beilein's hiring will occur within the next 48 hours, according to the reports.
John Beilein comes to Ann Arbor after five seasons in Morgantown, W. Va.
In five seasons with the Mountaineers, Beilein compiled a 104-60 record, making the Elite Eight in 2005 and the Sweet 16 in 2006.
This season, he led the Mountaineers to an NIT Championship.
Twenty-nine years as a head coach, winning records in 26 of the 29 seasons