Just days after rumors began surfacing that Dana Holgorsen may be leaving West Virginia, the head coach is reportedly joining the Houston Cougars to be their next head coach. The program had recently fired Major Applewhite following a two-year stint.
Holgorsen is expected to ink a five-year deal with $20 million, which would make him the highest-paid coach at the Group of Five level. The $4 million per year average is a raise of nearly $1 million for Holgorsen, who finishes his career in Morgantown with a 61-41 career record.
While Holgorsen did a good job transitioning the program from the Big East to the Big 12, there were several seasons where the program did not reach expectations, with 2018 being at the top of the list. The Mountaineers entered the season with a legitimate Heisman contender in quarterback Will Grier and arguably the deepest group of wide receivers in the country. But West Virginia was unable to meet those expectations, finishing 8-4 with a loss to Syracuse in the Camping World Bowl, dropping him to 2-5 in bowl games.
The timing might also have been right for Holgorsen considering key pieces like Grier and Jennings are gone and heading to the NFL, and star linebacker David Long also announced he was skipping his senior year to play at the next level.
It’s also been a sore subject that Holgorsen has not recruited too well during his time in Morgantown and has yet to develop a top-tier quarterback on his own.
With West Virginia now searching for a new head coach, that means that 40% of the Big 12 coaches will turn over between 2018 and 2019. Kansas State, Kansas and Texas Tech have all already found new head coaches to run their respective programs.
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