Various sources are now confirming that Bill Stewart is done as WVU’s head football coach. ESPN’s Joe Schad says that Stewart is done, and so do several local sources, including West Virginia MetroNews and, apparently, the Charleston Daily Mail, although I can’t get their article to open, possibly because the news is jamming up their servers.
The MetroNews report includes the tidbit that head-coach-in-waiting Dana Holgorsen will simply take over the WVU job a year early. If so, that will hopefully mark the end of a strange sequence of events that damaged Holgorsen’s reputation (probably mostly unfairly), ended Stewart’s WVU career (probably deservedly), and raised questions about new athletic director Oliver Luck’s decision-making abilities.
The ‘head-coach-in-waiting’ idea, in which Holgorsen was hired as offensive coordinator and allowed to bring in his own coaches while serving under Stewart for a year, before taking over as the head coach in 2012, was probably a pretty bad one from the start. As it turned out, Stewart evidently couldn’t handle it, and reportedly asked reporters to spread rumors about Holgorsen in order to damage Holgorsen’s reputation.
That revelation came to light when former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette WVU beat reporter Colin Dunlap mentioned it on a radio spot a few days ago. Since then, WVU has been trying to figure out what happened, and it looks like the allegations proved to be true. Now, Holgorsen, who one report alleged had had “as many as six alcohol-related incidents,” stands to become WVU’s head coach a year early. It turns out that these incidents apparently weren’t true, or at least were massively overblown.