Mike Alden, MU athletics director, didn’t need a compass, let alone a coaching search consultant, to find Kim Anderson.
Anderson, who was hired as the new Tigers basketball coach on April 28, was working about 95 miles west on Interstate 70 at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg.
The Tigers’ rabid fan base has multiple opinions about Anderson already. He’s the Second Coming. He’s too old. He’s a Norm Stewart retread.
We wish Anderson the best of luck. What bothers us about his hiring is the $42,500 the Kansas City Star reported the state’s largest public university wasted on Collegiate Sports Associates Executive Search and Consulting.
The reason Alden (and others like him) hire such firms (which are generally run by former coaches and athletics directors), is so they can do their work in secret. It creates a game of sanctioned lying that goes like this:
Alden has the consultant reach out to coach X, say, Gregg Marshall of Wichita State. Marshall denies he’s been contacted by MU, which is kinda, sorta true.
Then when the search is over, because it benefits the coach’s future earnings power, his agent later confirms, yes, he was contacted by the university, through the third party which pocketed a little easy cash.
It’s a silly game for a public university to be playing, particularly one overseeing one of the top journalism schools in the country.
Copyright St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Reprinted with permission.