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"This is the way these things work. You want to make sure that you have these things set. We knew there was going to be an overlap. That’s kind of standard in our business," Alden said. "We knew we’d be double-paying athletic directors for several months. That’s kind of standard. In my role, I’ll be doing those types of activities until Mack gets here, and then Mack will take those over. September 1, I’ll go onto the payroll of the College of Education at that time.
"Shoot, that’s kind of standard in our industry, and this is the perfect time for a new athletic director to come in in the spring. Our budget is already set for next year. We’ve got that rolling. We’ve already agreed to extending our contract with Nike for the next couple years. That’s a good thing for Mack to be able to inherit. That’s kind of standard in our industry. That happens all over the place. Certainly, I know Dr. Loftin and others will probably talk about that tomorrow, if people have questions. That’s kind of standard stuff for us."
Buried in there: Missouri is extending its deal with Nike.
Once Rhoades moves his family to Columbia, he plans to spend a few months "listening and learning," he said. He’ll meet with every coach and staff member in the department and evaluate the program’s every nook and cranny. At Houston, Rhoades wasn’t afraid to shake up his roster of coaches. He fired several, some that he inherited and others he hired.
Asked directly about Mizzou’s sagging men’s basketball team under first-year coach Kim Anderson, Rhoades insisted he won’t make changes for the sake of change.
"When I say I don’t have a lot of patience, I’m talking about in terms of getting things done," he said. "In evaluating coaches, there’s no set pattern. There’s so many different variables. First of all, what shape was the program in when you took it over? If it was in great shape and now all of a sudden that program starts to (struggle) well, there’s an issue. But if it was not in very good shape or left without any talent, that’s a completely different situation in how you evaluate that.
"For me, it’s really about, are we getting better?"
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Rhoads will take over at Mizzou "no later than April 27th." Between now and then, he said he will make a couple of trips to Columbia. At some point shortly thereafter, he said he will meet individually with every member of the athletic department that he will soon oversee.
The most visible of those, obviously, will be the head coaches of each sport at Missouri. Rhoads said he spoke briefly with Gary Pinkel after he accepted the job over the weekend.
"Sharing my philosophy," Rhoades said of the conversation. "I kind of operate from a premise of yes. You need something? Yes, we're gonna try to get that done. Certainly, come to me, it needs to be well thought out. How's it going to move the needle? Is there going to be a great return on investment?"
There is no doubt about Pinkel's future in Columbia. For the foreseeable future, Pinkel is almost certainly here as long as he wants to be here. As for some of the other coaches, Rhoades isn't ready to broach that subject just yet.
One last chance for a 10th win
Mizzou and South Carolina tip off at 8 pm CT tonight.
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