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Old 12-16-2007, 04:05 PM   #1
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Default Rodriguez announced that he is leaving West Virginia

MORGANTOWN -- According to WVU players, at a team meeting Sunday afternoon at the Puskar Center, Head Football Coach Rich Rodriguez announced that he is leaving West Virginia University to take over the football program at the University of Michigan.

Rodriguez left the meeting without talking with reporters.

Rodriguez's wife, Rita, was seen crying both before and after the meeting.

She did speak with reporters, but would not comment on what was said at the meeting.

After the meeting, players were heard chanting in support of Rodriguez as they walked to practice.

When asked if Rodriguez would be coaching the team in the Fiesta Bowl, players responded: "No", "I don't think so" and "No Comment".

Reports surfaced Friday afternoon that Rodriguez flew to Ohio to meet with Michigan about its open coaching position. The Sporting News reported Rodriguez flew to Toledo to negotiate with the Michigan representatives. The Detroit Free Press cited two sources who confirmed the meeting.

At a press conference on Saturday, Rodriguez refused to comment on the situation with Michigan.

Michigan has been searching for a coach since Lloyd Carr resigned two days after a regular season-ending loss to Ohio State.

Rodriguez has a 60-26 record in seven seasons in Morgantown.

It was almost a year ago when Rodriguez was courted and nearly took the head coaching job at Alabama.

Michigan raided the WVU coaching staff earlier this year, when the Wolverines hired John Beilein as its head basketball coach.

Rodriguez has a $4 million buyout clause in his contract that would be in effect if he leaves his position at West Virginia before the end of August, 2008.
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