The Cleveland Cavaliers want to hire Tom Izzo as their head coach. The Cavaliers offered the head coach job to Tom Izzo on Sunday, according to reports out of Ohio. Tom Izzo is, of course, the head coach of the Michigan State basketball team, and one of the most sought-after college coaches. He has been linked with various NBA jobs, as well as other jobs in the NCAA the past few years, but he has remained with Michigan State, and very recently stated that he really has no interest in leaving Michigan. That hasn’t stopped Cleveland from being interested, and it appears that the Cavaliers are willing to do anything they can to entice LeBron James into signing that new contract when July rolls around.
The first official offer from Cleveland to Izzo came last night, if we believe the reports, but Cleveland isn’t issuing a statement about what might or might not have taken place. That’s not a surprise either, as they would want to hear back from Izzo before making any kind of a statement about what their dream coach might be thinking.
If Tom Izzo did decide to take the job, it would probably mean that he was offered one of those contracts that Cleveland made it impossible to pass up. He would be replacing Mike Brown as the head coach, after Cleveland decided to fire him after losing in the second round of the 2010 NBA Playoffs. Brown will definitely find another coaching job, but it has left the Cavaliers struggling to get a big name that would help to keep LeBron James in town.
Looking at this situation from the side of Izzo, it’s hard to imagine that he would want this job if James wasn’t coming back. Cleveland is in the position to make another title run in the 2011 NBA Playoffs if James is back, and conceivably continue to do so for the coming years. Without LeBron James though, this is a team that might continue to struggle in the playoffs, and without a big name player to hang his hat on, would be far less enticing for Tom Izzo.
Right now, it seems like Izzo would be smart to turn down this job offer from Cleveland, or to tell them that he will re-consider the offer in July, when he knows what the Cleveland roster is going to look like. He has no real incentive to give up on Michigan State right now, especially with such a positive outlook at the school for their 2010-11 college basketball season. We don’t know for sure what Izzo is going to decide in regards to this job offer, but it wouldn’t make sense at this time for Izzo to commit to Cleveland.