Greg Schiano and New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy talked recently to discuss the coach’s potential return to the Rutgers sideline, NJ Advance Media reported.
The governor’s spokesman declined to discuss the call with the outlet.
Schiano, who was Rutgers’ head coach from 2001-11, is believed to be close to returning to the downtrodden football program but wants guarantees that facilities will be upgraded to compete with those at other Big Ten campuses.
NJ Advance Media said that such upgrades would need support in the state capital since about 22 percent of Rutgers’ operating budget comes from the state. Schiano and the university have agreed to contract terms, but the coach wants written assurances that a football-only facility and an indoor practice facility will be built, according to the report.
The 53-year-old Schiano, a New Jersey native, met with campus officials last week in Columbus, Ohio.
When Schiano took the Rutgers job in 2001, he inherited a program that finished 15-51 in its previous six seasons. The team finished under .500 in Schiano’s first four seasons, but in his final seven, the Scarlet Knights were 56-33 and won five of six bowl games.
Rutgers was 68-67 in Schiano’s tenure, which ended when he became head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He also worked three season as Ohio State’s defensive coordinator.
Since Schiano left, Rutgers is 36-60. Including a 9-36 mark the past four seasons.
—Field Level Media