New Indiana AD backs Lynch

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Despite a growing clamor among fans to sack Indiana head football coach Bill Lynch, the chance for a coaching change seemed slim after a 3-9 season. Not only had Indiana rewarded Lynch with a contract extension a year ago, but the school's new athletic director, Fred Glass, wasn't taking over until Jan. 2. Plus, Indiana was paying hefty salaries to two basketball coaches (Tom Crean and Kelvin Sampson).

The chances for a chance went from slim to none Friday as Glass backed Lynch in an interview with The Indianapolis Star.

"Bill Lynch is and will be the football coach at Indiana University moving forward,'' Glass said. "My view is last year Indiana University entered into a contract with Bill Lynch to coach our football team with an expressed promise really to give him an opportunity to get our football program to where we want it to be. And it seems to me that to fire him after one year (of a four-year extension) would not be giving him that promised opportunity. I really think contracts need to mean something again at Indiana University.''

Glass met with Lynch on Wednesday and affirmed his faith in the coach, who is under contract through 2011. The AD-in-waiting spoke publicly in response to concerns about negative recruiting.

Indiana has a strong group of verbal commitments lined up for 2009.

"We've been hearing that our competitors had been trying to exploit the athletic director transition as well as the supposed uncertainty around the football program,'' Glass said. "With that, I concluded that instead of waiting until after I was actually the AD, though it's a little awkward, that I was the only person who could really speak to that with authority."