What Can Duke Do To Keep K?

The world now knows that Blue Devil head coach Mike Krzyzewski could be looking to leave Durham for the NBA and Los Angeles. So what will it take for the man behind Duke Basketball's success to stay in Durham? TDD spent Friday looking for things and came up with a list.

The following is a summary of theories and speculation that is circulating concerning a list of issues Coach K has in Durham at this point.

"There are some problems with the program that he would like addressed, and this is as good a time as any to do that," said one source. "I mean he's in a great position to negotiate now with both sides, and can't go wrong with either choice."

That may be true, but the list is anyone's guess at the moment. However TheDevilsDen.com spent most of Friday searching for the most likely theories and has come up with the following list after multiple sources echoed.



Increased Compensation for Staff:

With the recent success the Blue Devil football program has enjoyed on the hiring of several of the country's top coaches, many Duke fans were thrilled. However those hires did not come cheap, and Coach K is apparently in the market for his staff to also be taken care of with the seemingly blank check approach used to woo top talent to the Yoh Center.



Practice Facility:

When the Blue Devils go on the road to big time away games there is usually a stop at one of the local NBA teams' practice facilities, which are amazing to say the least. Over the past few years the head Blue Devil has indeed become enamored with that kind of setup and is looking to duplicate that in Durham.

"He'd like to have a practice facility," associate athletics director Chris Kennedy told Jim Young of the Greensboro New and Record. "We'd like to have a practice facility to relieve pressure on our other facilities."

There is speculation that the facility was promised as far back as 18 months ago, and yet no groundbreaking ceremony has taken place. The proposed facility would certainly require many millions of dollars. However one source indicated that the basketball program would more than likely pay for it sooner than later given the enormous amount of revenue the team brings in each and every year.

Still the apparent apathy on behalf of the administration when it comes to setting firm details of the facility is reportedly a point of contention with Krzyzewski, who had apparently envisioned the building in place by the 2005 off-season.



At least $40 Million More Reasons:

He's been offered a deal worth $40 million over the next five years, and that's guaranteed. The latest figures that were trickling in here also included incentives and other sources of income that could reach closer to $11 million per season.

As assistant coach Steve Wojciechowski told ESPN yesterday, "that is something that could take care of his family, and his family's family."

While Krzyzewski's lifetime contract remains a private matter, it's estimated that Coach K rakes over $2 million per year at this point when you factor in his salary, endorsements, speaking engagements, books, and other such income. Obviously this move would signal a big increase in that department.

Then there's the challenge of coaching the NBA's biggest and most valuable franchise. Unfortunately for Coach K, there's no guarantee on his roster next season, much less his team's ability to compete in one of the more competitive divisions.



Needed Reforms in College Basketball:

The state of college basketball has never been more tedious. The top high school players bypass the game all together without any advice from a would-be coach thanks to incredibly restrictive NCAA recruiting policies. The same is true for would be early draft entries who aren't allowed to have access to their coaches in the off season, though any NBA agent or scout may talk to them without limitation.

Duke felt the sting for the first time in the summer following the 1999 season, and a somewhat less severe blow in 2002 when three more players left after three seasons.

This off-season produced the first prep to the pros jump in the Duke family and only the second one and done player. While Krzyzewski was supportive of both Shaun Livingston and Luol Deng in their decisions, he made it clear that he felt things would have worked out better if he had been allowed to have more involvement with both players when NCAA rules prohibited such counsel.

In his summer press conference, Coach K spoke extensively about protecting the game and what he called college basketball's "brand".

"The NBA and college basketball need to come closer together to define timelines in what they do and what we do," Krzyzewski said. "I'm not saying I have the answer to it, but I think we could probably come up with something different which could help both."



The Emily K Center:

The Emily Krzyzewski Family LIFE Center provides a nurturing environment for children and families through programs that contribute to their educational, psychological, physical, social and spiritual well being. The Center is raising $6.5 million to construct a building in Durham's West End and provide early operating and program support. Meanwhile, the Center has begun offering programs and activities that help youth and families in Durham realize their hopes and dreams and build a brighter future for themselves and their community.

That's the mission statement for Coach K's latest charity project in Durham, a center named in honor of his departed mother that will serve as the kind of community center that was a huge part of shaping Coach K in his youth. However funding has stalled in fund raising since the August 23rd ground breaking ceremony, leaving the center with just $3.7 of the needed $6.5 million.

While this is seen by many as an issue that's "on the back burner", it's still reportedly on the menu when it comes to Krzyzewski's list.



The above is simply a collection of the most often reported reasons Krzyzewski would look to leave Durham. However new president Dick Broadhead confirmed that he and Krzyzewski met Tuesday night to discuss a high number of issues, which he refused to comment on.

"We didn't have that conversation to report it," Broadhead told the N&R.

The general consensus is that Krzyzewski's news conference will come at sometime Monday. By that time will Duke have stepped up to the plate to at least address some of his concerns? Will Coach K have consulted those he trusts most about a possible cross-country move?

Those answers will determine if next week is the start of Duke's recruiting efforts in 2005 and beyond, or a recruiting search for a new coach in Durham.


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