A week from today, Dana Holgorsen will have a staff meeting with his coaches. Two days later, there’s a team meeting with the coaches and the players on the eve of the spring semester, which features winter conditioning and spring practice. Those will be the first two meetings since the Pinstripe Bowl loss.
Between now and those two get-togethers, some things will be changing for the Mountaineers.
Given the information gathered from conversations with a few different people — sources, if you must — in recent days, Holgorsen will do more than hire just one coach and assign him the cornerbacks. That’s been in the works since Holgorsen fired Daron Roberts last month and, as stated in last week’s pre-bowl chat, the hiring shouldn’t be much farther down the road. Holidays and vacations tend to slow the already purposefully deliberate human resources process.
A name? Wish I could tell you — and it’s not that I’m not allowed to, but it’s that I don’t “know” it. I’ve heard one a lot, but I can’t confirm it. I’ve heard another one not as often, but can’t confirm it. Dana’s pretty good at keeping secrets secret.
But it does seem that Holgorsen’s evaluation of the season, beginning the morning after the Kansas game when he demoted Joe DeForest from defensive coordinator to “just” associate head coach and safeties coach and promoted linebackers coach Keith Patterson from co-coordinator to coordinator, has led him to believe other changes are necessary to continue elevating his program.
These changes — and let’s not pretend the wheels weren’t moving in November and let’s not forget moves may not be limited solely to the coaching staff — might not draw a standing ovation. Thumbs might be turned upside down. The feeling I’ve gotten from burning up phones is that Dana only wants the arrow pointing up again.
A 7-6 season and a five-game losing streak can do that to a man, which, I have to think, is the desired result. Status quo wasn’t going to work in a results-based business, where results also happen in the stands and at fundraisers.
I haven’t talked to Oliver Luck since a very brief conversation the afternoon of the bowl game, but his thoughts are out there for your consumption, though I wonder if he mandated much. Dana and I have spoken, but he’s not saying much of anything, which is consistent with what he hasn’t said about personnel matters in his almost 25 months on campus, except that he’ll address the topic when it’s ready to be addressed.
Vague, I know.
Yet the coaching convention begins Monday in Nashville, Tenn., and Dana is going to be there. The 2013 season starts, for all practical purposes, with those two meetings at the end of the week. This could all happen very quickly and Holgorsen may have taken definitive steps to take control and reposition his program.