The Internet blew up Monday afternoon as a report from Rivals circulated claiming Thad Matta had failed a physical after agreeing to a deal to become Indiana's next head coach. According to the report from Jim Coyle, the failed physical blew up the deal and Matta was now out. There's one problem: the report is not true.
Multiple Indiana beat writers and Stadium's Jeff Goodman have come out to refute the claims.
As an Indiana alum who hosts a basketball postgame show/podcast/radio show, I have a number of sources close to the program. I heard this rumor Monday morning and worked the phones. I couldn't get a single source to confirm the story. That was incredibly fishy, because when something that dramatic happens, usually everyone wants to talk about it. It's really hard to keep a story like that under wraps. The fact that I couldn't confirm it quickly led me to believe it wasn't true.
The 53-year-old Matta struggled with health issues over his final few seasons at Ohio State. His last season with the Buckeyes in 2016-17 resulted in a 17-15 record as he battled back and foot problems. People close to Matta say his back is much better but he still struggles with his right foot.
In 17 seasons as a head coach at Butler, Xavier and Ohio State, Matta posted a sparkling record of 439-154 (.740), won eight conference titles (including five Big Ten titles), reached two Final Fours, a national title game and was named a conference Coach of the Year five times. He was as good as anyone in the business.
Matta currently lives in Indianapolis and has been a visible presence at some of the NCAA Tournament games over the past week. It would make sense for a program like Indiana to ask Matta to take a physical before bringing him on as its head coach to allay any health concerns. But while some of this story makes sense, it's simply not true.