ATLANTA -- West Virginia coach John Beilein has an offer from Michigan athletic director Bill Martin to become Michigan’s next men’s basketball coach, according to three people close to the situation.
He is expected to make a decision in the next 24 hours.
The Free Press asked Martin via e-mail if Beilein had been offered the job and was in Ann Arbor on Sunday. Martin responded only, “If Coach Beilein was in AA today, I didn't know about it.”
Beilein, 54, has been rumored as the Wolverines’ top candidate for nearly a week and those with knowledge of the offer say he was still considering it.
Martin has final approval on the coach to replace Tommy Amaker, who was fired March 17, but has used an advisory committee of university officials and a basketball expert with Michigan ties (ESPN analyst Tim McCormick) to advise him on the candidate pool.
Among the candidates who likely will not get the job: Southern Illinois’ Chris Lowery, who is believed to have had informal discussions with U-M officials but agreed to a contract extension with Southern Illinois on Saturday night.
Beilein has 26 winning seasons in 29 years and just guided a young team to the NIT championship last week.
Even this season after losing the bulk of the Elite Eight and Sweet Sixteen teams from the previous two seasons, the Mountaineers finished 27-9 and defeated seven NCAA tournament teams, including Final Four participant UCLA.