COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Texas A&M moved a step closer to hiring its next football coach on Thursday, holding a board of regents meeting to discuss the parameters of a contract offer and establish a timetable for landing its next coach, which could be Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher.
Chancellor John Sharp said the school should “very shortly” announce the scheduling of another regents meeting that would be held to approve the coaching hire. Though he didn’t name Fisher or anybody specifically, Sharp indicated a short timetable for the process, saying the meeting could be called as early as Friday, meaning the regents would have identified whom they intend to hire.
Sources told ESPN earlier this week that the Aggies are preparing to make a lucrative offer to Fisher.
Asked what he’s looking for in Texas A&M’s next coach, Sharp deadpanned: “Nothing serious, just want him to win a national championship.”
Sharp on Thursday touted the resources Texas A&M has to offer to its new coach.
“We’ve got the best facilities in the SEC, we’ve got the best stadium … and we intend to have the best coach before this is over,” he said.
Fisher won the BCS National Championship in 2013 with the Seminoles and is 83-23 in eight seasons as their head coach. The coach has deflected questions repeatedly about his future in recent days. The latest such instance came on Thursday when he appeared on ESPNU SiriusXM radio. Fisher said he was not going to talk about potential jobs.
Asked for a timetable when he might make a choice, Fisher answered, “I always make decisions at the end of the year after things are finished.”
Fisher’s contract contains a buyout that by most measures is relatively small. It includes only a requirement that he pay the remaining contracts of assistant coaches who aren’t retained at FSU after his departure. That includes his ops director and strength and conditioning coach.
Texas A&M athletic director Scott Woodward this week stated similar expectations to Sharp. On Sunday, after the school fired Kevin Sumlin — who was 51-26 in six seasons with the Aggies — Woodward said in a statement: “Our expectations at A&M are very high. We believe that we should compete for SEC championships on an annual basis and, at times, national championships.”
Woodward declined comment when approached by reporters after Thursday’s meeting.
Sources told ESPN.com’s Mark Schlabach on Thursday that Florida State officials are urging Fisher to decide whether he will remain the school’s football coach beyond this season. The Seminoles play their regular-season finale on Saturday against Louisiana-Monroe and need a win to extend their streak of consecutive bowl appearances to 36 consecutive seasons, the longest active streak nationally.
The Aggies are prepared to make Fisher one of the sport’s highest-paid coaches with an annual salary of more than $7 million, sources told ESPN.