Billy D, Oregon rumors


Another day, another major college basketball program wooing UF coach Billy Donovan.

On Tuesday, the Eugene Register-Guard reported that Oregon is putting together a strong financial package to try to lure Billy Donovan away from Florida.

A Florida athletic department official said Tuesday that Oregon has yet to ask for permission to speak with Donovan.

The New York Daily News reported Tuesday that Donovan turned down a $3 million per year deal to coach at St. John’s. But the same UF official claimed the report was false.

Could Oregon potentially offer more money? The Ducks are strongly backed by Nike founder and OU alum Phil Knight. It is said that Oregon wants a big name to replace Ernie Kent, who was fired after 13 seasons. Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon, Gonzaga’s Mark Few and Texas A&M’s Mark Turgeon also have been mentioned as possible candidates.

Donovan is still at his vacation home in Crescent Beach an unavailable for comment. He just completed the third year of a six-year contract extension that pays him an average of $3.3 million annually.

Donovan, 44, posted one of the biggest wins in his career against Oregon. Florida beat the Ducks in the 2007 Elite Eight on the path to its second straight national title.


  1. It tis the season for the rumor mill to run amuck, amuck, amuck!!

    Why would Billy D in his right mind leave for Oregon as his son heads to Washington DC. As with most big school boosters, their school is always better than any other school so how could the best and the brightest not come when called – cause it ain’t that great. Kentucky lucked out but the question is not how long will the blue bloods young guns stay around but how long with thier Coach Big Bad John?? Billy will be at Florida when John C is in the NBA, and neither one will be in the beautiful state of Oregon, and it is beautiful!

  2. Billy has turned down more money from Kentucky than Oregon will offer. Kentucky is always Kentucky, not to mention Billy coached there for many years. What would make these schools think they even have a shot at him? Are they just trying to get on Sportscenter?

  3. Hey Kevin. At some point you have to look at the total number of players we have lost over the past 5 or 6 years. No…duh..the football team should not start over, but Billy seems to not get coaching in this era. Between Amanda Butler and Billy Donovan, we’ve lost two teams lately. You have to think…where there is smoke…..

    I await your reply once again telling me how stupid i am and how wrong i am.

  4. From an Oregon Ducks fan perspective, I don’t see much validity in this rumor. Like Bob stated, it doesn’t make much sense for Billy to make a switch to Oregon. Although our basketball program is flush with Nike money, one of the most expensive arenas in NCAA basketball, and a tremendous fan base (reference Autzen Stadium as loudest stadium in college football), Florida can match up with all of that. Further, who wouldn’t take the sun over the rain in Oregon? I sure as hell wouldn’t.

    My best guess is Mark Few of Gonzaga or Mark Turgeon of Texas A&M.

  5. i dont quite agree with evan on starting over. however, why have there been so many players leaving, not just to the pros, but transferring?

    from an AP report about shipman leaving-

    “Center Marreese Speights, forward Jonathan Mitchell and guard Jai Lucas left the program following the 2008 season. Speights turned pro. Mitchell (Rutgers) and Lucas (Texas) transferred.

    Guard Nick Calathes, forward Allan Chaney, center Eloy Vargas and DeShawn Painter left after last season. Calathes turned pro. Chaney (Virginia Tech) and Vargas (Miami Dade College) transferred, and Painter asked for his release before stepping foot on campus. Forward Alex Tyus also decided to transfer last spring, but returned to Gainesville about a week later.”