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"Search" fees

Smart guys, read this one and help us out. 

Ten days ago Steve Fairchild was released by the brand new AD at Colorado State. In making the announcement, the AD stated that he had hired a search firm (Spencer Stuart) and noted that the University was paying them $250,000.

We heard that and said he must have meant $25,000. We read it online again as $250,000 and we called the reporter and said it has to be $25,000. They confirmed he said $250,000.

We immediately called 2 agents. Both said it had to be $25,000. We agreed. Look at what similar searches have cost. A lot of the data is public. There certainly have been high profile, six figure search fees paid; but those tend to be at perennial Top 25 programs and even then $250,000 seems rich. Far more frequently we see $25,000, $35,000 or $50,000 fees paid especially when you're dealing with a "non-BCS" school.

So we called a buddy at one of the search firms..."We'd prefer not to discuss fees." Ah, it was worth a try.

So here we are. On Monday we learned that CSU had selected Jim McElwain as their new head coach (8 days after letting Fairchild go). Yesterday was the presser and the AD went out of his way in his remarks to thank the search firm for their diligent efforts. We're just now reading some of the press about yesterday's events and sure enough nearly every reporter in Colorado notes that CSU is paying $250,000 in search fees.

Anybody else find this odd? Comments welcomed below.