MSU AD 'Optimistic' But Prepared If Tom Izzo Leaves

Mark Hollis, Michigan State's athletic director, said that he is optimistic Tom Izzo will stay in East Lansing and be the Spartans' head basketball coach next season. He also said that if Izzo were to leave, a plan is in place to quickly find a replacement.

Hollis told The Detroit News he has to be prepared "right now" to hire Izzo's successor if the 55-year-old Spartans coach accepts the reported contract offer recently made by the Cavaliers.

"You have to be ready to close that gap quickly and make sure the program, which is very solid right now, continues on an upswing," Hollis said.

Although all MSU fans are hoping Izzo stays, it's not like there is a small pool of possible successors should he leave. Izzo's coaching tree is quite large, and chances are Michigan State could reach out to one of his former assistants to replace him. Coaching searches in the middle of June aren't common for college basketball programs, but for MSU it could be a lot smoother of a process than at most other schools.

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