Football coach Rich Rodgriquez and the University of Michigan have agreed to pay $4 million to Rodriguez's former employer, University of West Virginia, for breach of contract. This was the inevitable outcome, as West Virginia's claim was airtight.
Rodriguez's contract with West Virginia had a $4 million dollar compensation clause if he left before the end of the contract. He did, then tried to get out of paying it. His lawyer claimed he was "tricked" into signing the contact with that clause in it. Yes, a man smart enough to run a major college football program who was represented by legal counsel, was tricked. It's no shock they didn't actually take that one all the way to the courthouse.
And that's the value of a written contract: It's an essential tool for doing business with people you don't trust, and Rodriguez certainly demonstrated that he's not trustworthy.
With Indiana University having just had yet more penalties added because they failed to properly oversee Kelvin Sampson, a man they hired despite a track record of rules violations, it's becoming clear that schools should not be giving these coaches second chances. Michigan may yet regret their choice of Rodriguez, if their share of the $4 million doesn't have them regretting it yet.