Curtain Call: West Virginia Head Coach Bill Stewart Resigns Amid Controversy

Daniel KablackCorrespondent IIIJune 10, 2011

Bill Stewart coached WVU to 28-12 record over three seasons.
Bill Stewart coached WVU to 28-12 record over three seasons.Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

It was inevitable. Anytime "coach-in-waiting" status is given to anyone, it's bound to cause some drama.

This is no different in the great state of West Virginia.

Recent reports of the drama unfolding at West Virginia University surrounding football head coach, Bill Stewart and ''coach-in-waiting," Dana Holgorsen, have caused the university to take action.

At 4:30 PM on Friday afternoon, it was confirmed by sources close to the negotiations of his buy out, that Stewart plans to resign with an official announcement coming later in the day, making Holgorsen the new head coach of Mountaineer football.

This move comes a year ahead of schedule, as Stewart was expected to finish the 2011-12 season as head coach. Holgorsen was hired as offensive coordinator from Oklahoma State at the end of last season and planned on taking over for the 2012-13 season as head coach.

Over the past week, allegations made by a former writer at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to Pittsburgh's sports talk radio station 93.7 'The Fan', fueled speculation that Stewart had come to him looking to "dig up dirt", on coach-in-waiting Dana Holgorsen.

After a week of investigating the situation, West Virginia Athletic Director, Oliver Luck, decided it would be in the best interest of the University and fans to part ways with Stewart.

Stewart was given the head coaching job in 2008 after West Virginia's unlikely 48-28 victory over the Oklahoma Sooners in the 2008 Fiesta Bowl. He then went 28-12 during his next three years as Mountaineers head coach. His 15-6 record against what many would call 'not quite up to par' teams in the Big East, along with the expectation of success from previous years and these new allegations, swayed many of the WVU fans who previously supported Stewart.

Stewart lead the Mountaineers to three straight bowl games but lost two of the three, including a 23-7 loss last year against NC State in the Champs Sports Bowl.

Holgorsen looks to ignite a Mountaineers offense that's been down the past couple years. Last year WVU ranked third in points allowed on defense thanks to defensive guru, Jeff Casteel, but a lackluster, 25 points per game resulted in multiple close losses, including defeats to No.15 LSU, UConn and Syracuse.