Sports Biz with Darren Rovell

Is Loyalty Overrated?

In the most strange story of 2009 (so far), Boston College is readying to formally fire its head football coach Jeff Jagodzinski for interviewing with the New York Jets.

Jagodzinski, who was an NFL assistant for eight years, was told by Boston College athletic director Gene DiFilippo that if he took the interview he’d be canned.

Let’s assume that’s now going to happen.

Over the coach’s first two seasons at the school, he’s led the team to a 20-8 record. I’m not so sure Jagodzinski is going to get this job, or any of the six NFL head coaching vacancies, so the essential question here is, what damage has the coach done if he were to explore the NFL and would have been allowed to come back to the Eagles?

For DeFilippo, it’s all about loyalty. He wants a guy to work for Boston College with blinders on.

More realistically, it’s about recruiting. By most accounts, Boston College’s recruiting class so far is mediocre. There’s less than a month left until signing day. So it's common sense that if the head coach is going around interviewing for an NFL job, you might not get that big recruit. On the flip side, that's not necessarily true. Interviewing for or being speculated in the NFL picture, has sometimes helped college coaches get recruits. Hiring a new guy during this time period is definitely not going to help recruiting in the short term.

Presumably, there’s also some significant cost involved since the school firing him without just cause – there isn’t a clause in his contract that states he can’t interview with others – will mean paying him about $3 million for the final three years of his contract.

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So we leave it up to you, our readers. What do you think would have been the best business move?

Questions?  Comments?