Reports popped Monday morning that a group on Baylor's Board of Regents was working to bring Art Briles back to Baylor in what the school would label a one-year suspension while reinstating him in time for the 2017 season.
The report sat out there, and sat out there, and sat out there, without much word from anyone in green and gold. Interim president David Garland told WFAA-TV in Dallas, “I was really caught off guard by all this… A lot of fans love what the coach did on the football field, and you can understand that. But other factors have to be taken into consideration.”
The school issued a statement, on Tuesday afternoon, saying "no vote was taken" at a previously-scheduled Monday Board meeting with regards to bringing Briles back. But there has not been, at any point thus far, a statement from anyone representing Baylor saying something to the effect of: "Art Briles will not be reinstated as the head football coach at Baylor. Period."
So the rumor lingered.
Now, on Wednesday afternoon, Chip Brown of HornsDigest reported the push to bring the Briles era back from the dead was over. He writes:
The sources said attempts to get the regents to rethink Briles' future and bring him back in 2017 - after a one-year suspension - were unsuccessful during a regents meeting Monday night to the point where an anticipated vote on the subject never took place, according to a Baylor spokeswoman.
Brown goes on to state mediation will now begin on a contract that owed Briles $40 million over the next eight years, with Baylor looking to pay its former coach around $20 million to go away.
As reports like this hitting on Wednesday afternoon -- and the likelihood more will drop in the coming days, weeks and months -- the idea of Briles ever being in green and gold again remains a complete non-starter.
Now it's time for everyone in the Baylor universe to accept it.