N.C. State To Fire Sidney Lowe, Hire Search Firm

North Carolina State Athletic Director Debbie Yow, who has known for two months that she would fire head basketball coach Sidney Lowe at the end of the Wolfpack’s just-completed season, will make the dismissal official with an announcement this week.

Sidney Lowe

(Yow.)

Yow, who is scheduled to meet with Lowe tomorrow in Raleigh, is expected to hire Parker Executive Search to assist in the new hire. The same firm placed Yow as A.D. at the school last year. Parker typically charges $75,000(!) to help a school place a basketball coach.

N.C. State is offering a considerable sum to coach the team this time around, at $3 million per season. Despite that figure, I’m told high profile candidates for the Wolfpack job will be scarce because of Yow’s tempestuous relationship with Gary Williams when she was the A.D. at Maryland. (They’ll need every last dime of that three-mil to lure legitimate candidates.)

An ACC head basketball coach told me today that Yow has been asking around for months about who she should hire as Lowe’s replacement.

From talking to several sources the past week, including one inside the N.C. State athletic department, I can confirm that - at least at the moment - Yow’s top choices for the job are Rick Barnes, Sean Miller, Tubby Smith and Mark Fox.

Yow has no shot at Barnes, and Smith is liking pining for a contract extension at Minnesota. (As he does with perpetual outside job interest every offseason.)

Though even at $3 million per, candidates like Miller and Fox are no lock for Raleigh when you saddle an uphill job with the weight of Yow’s notorious managerial reputation.