UPDATE (9:00pm CST): Multiple sources indicated late Friday that LSU coach Trent Johnson has agreed to move west, taking over the Horned Frog's middling basketball program. Indications are that final salary detials have yet to be worked out, but that as early reported here the deal would be for seven figures with performance encentives attached. Johnson is expected to have a smaller compensation pool for his assistant coaches, but final numbers have yet to be put on paper.
An announcement is expected as early as Monday morning.
Original Report: Multiple sources have confirmed to Frogs O' War that TCU Athletic Director Chris Del Conte has recieved permission to interview LSU Head Coach Trent Johnson for the position of Men's Basketball coach at TCU. One source also confirmed that he is likely to accept and will be introduced in the very near future, likely early next week.
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, ESPN Dallas and CBS Sports have also confirmed TCU's interest and the likelihood of Johnson taking the position. TCU Athletics had no comment on the story as of Friday afternoon.
Trent Johnson just finished his fourth season as head coach at LSU, which was preceded by a four year stay at Stanford and a five year stint at Nevada.
The first major hurdle will likely be Johnson's salary, which had been $1.2 million per year at LSU. LSU's board of regents also approved a longevity clause that would have made Johnson's salary over $1.4 million if he had stayed at the school through the 2013-2014 season.
Jim Christian made roughly $600,000 a year as head coach, meaning TCU would have to double that salary rate to match Johnson's current salary. The other problem appears to be the assistant coach salary pool, which for TCU is reportedly slightly more than $300,000. This would also represent a decrease from what Johnson currently has available to him in Baton Rouge.
Although it is not yet clear how TCU would structure Johnson's salary, it does appear TCU is willing to at least offer a seven figure base with incentive clauses that would push total compensation higher.
If TCU was to offer Johnson an equal salary to come to Fort Worth, he would still only be the 8th highest paid coach in the conference ahead of only Billy Gillispie at Texas Tech and Fred Hoiberg at Iowa State
Johnson has made NCAA Tournament trips with all three schools, his most recent trip occurred during his first season with LSU. Last year, Johnson took the Tigers to the NIT where they lost in the first round to Oregon.
The hallmark of Johnson's teams have always been a focus on academics, defense and strong post play. At Stanford, Johnson was credited with the development of the current NBA playing Lopez twins. In the same meld, he helped Nick Fazekas grow into a star player with Nevada, taking that program back to the tournament for the first time since 1985.