CLEMSON — Three days into the College World Series, Clemson is getting closer to finalizing who it will trust to lead the Tigers back to Omaha.
All’s quiet on the Clemson front, though that may come to an end this week as an impending announcement is expected to declare Jack Leggett’s successor.
Clemson had 24 different head coaches in the baseball program’s first 60 years of existence, dating to late in the 19th Century, but only Bill Wilhelm and Leggett lorded over the Tigers for the next 57 years.
That’s why the expectations for whomever athletic director Dan Radakovich tabs for the 2016 season will be sky-high from the start. Leggett was dismissed June 4.
Monte Lee figures to be the frontrunner, as of now. The seventh-year College of Charleston head man who played for the Cougars from 1996-99 interviewed Friday, and he continues to be of high interest for Radakovich and company, who only early last week met for the first time with Lee to gauge his interest and get to know the 2015 Colonial Athletic Association Coach of the Year.
Lee took home $193,000 last year, which was a 67.6 percent raise from his 2014 earnings. Leggett is contractually due a $200,000 buyout.
If Lee stays put, Clemson could also go the route of Maryland head coach John Szefc or Virginia assistant Kevin McMullan, who reportedly interviewed. Szefc took the Terrapins to the past two NCAA Super Regional rounds.
It was this year Maryland succumbed to McMullan’s Cavaliers, who are back in the College World Series after finishing runner-up in last year’s tournament. Virginia defeated Arkansas in the tournament’s opening game.
McMullen is completing his 12th season in Charlottesville. Of note, he is a 1990 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, which is also where Radakovich earned his undergraduate degree.