AP NEWS

Stallings buyout could cloud Pitt Day

March 25, 2018
Pitt head Kevin Stallings speaks to the media before practice Friday, Sept. 30, 2016 at Petersen Events Center.

University of Pittsburgh officials undoubtedly hope the imbroglio about the pricey buyout the school is negotiating to close the door on basketball coach Kevin Stallings’ contract after a 0-18 record in ACC basketball blows over next week.

If it doesn’t they might have some explaining to do when more than 300 faculty, staff and students descend on Harrisburg on March 20 to lobby lawmakers on behalf of the school.

Times are tough at Pitt, they’ll tell lawmakers. The state is slated to flat fund the school that has a $2.2 billion budget is slated again this year. And that’s only if things go well and lawmakers accept the Gov. Tom Wolf’s recommendation that they set aside $146.7 million for the quasi-public research university.

The University Times reports that uncertainty over state subsidies after the state was four months late with the check last year, has prompted some staffers to participate in the road trip for the first time this year.

Paul A. Supowitz, vice chancellor for community and governmental relations, even provides participants with a fact sheet outlining Pitt’s myriad contributions to the community.

No words yet on how they are going to explain a multi-million dollar payout to the coach who couldn’t pull out a win. But odds are they will rely on that old favorite: the boosters are paying for it.

Hail Pitt.

Debra Erdley is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 412-320-7996 or derdley@tribweb.com or via Twitter @deberdley_trib