Rich Rodriguez fired, reports say
ESPN.com news services
Michigan has fired football coach Rich Rodriguez after his third season ended with a school-record 38-point loss in the Gator Bowl, Fox 2 TV and the Detroit Free Press are reporting.
The report comes after Rodriguez met with athletic director Dave Brandon earlier Tuesday. Members of the football team are scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, according to a report from annarbor.com.
Michigan's Gator Bowl loss to Mississippi State knocked Rodriguez's overall record to 15-22 with college football's winningest program. He was 6-18 in Big Ten games, 0-6 against rivals Ohio State and Michigan State and 2-11 versus ranked teams in The Associated Press' Top 25 at the time of the game.
After the Gator Bowl, Rodriguez described his mood as "disappointed and frustrated, but not discouraged" after the Wolverines' loss left them 7-6. Michigan will owe him $2.5 million to buy out the final three years of his contract.
Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh, who played quarterback at Michigan, has been cited as a potential candidate to replace Rodriguez. But a source with direct knowledge of Harbaugh's thinking said Harbaugh is "highly unlikely" to accept the Michigan job if offered, the Detroit Free Press reported.
NCAA compliance issues and three losses to archrival Ohio State didn't help matters for Rodriguez, who left West Virginia to succeed Lloyd Carr.
Last year, the NCAA disciplined the program for practice and training violations, but didn't decide that Rodriguez had failed to promote an atmosphere of compliance with NCAA rules.
The problems came to light just before the 2009 season when the Detroit Free Press, quoting anonymous players, reported that the program was exceeding NCAA limits on practice and training time.