Jump to content
  • USF Bulls fans join us at The Bulls Pen

    It's simple, free and connects you to other South Florida Bulls fans!

  • Members do not see this ad, Register

DOC HOLLIDAY Leaves WVA for MARSHALL


cygnus34

Recommended Posts


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  1,741
  • Reputation:   1
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  02/26/2004

December 17, 2009

Holliday present for Herd

AD's search kept coming back to WVU assistant

HUNTINGTON - Mike Hamrick didn't downplay his 30-plus year relationship with John "Doc" Holliday, joking that it served as "pretty extensive research."

By Doug Smock

Staff writer

HUNTINGTON - Mike Hamrick didn't downplay his 30-plus year relationship with John "Doc" Holliday, joking that it served as "pretty extensive research."

But when it came time for Hamrick to make the hire that stands to define his tenure as Marshall's athletic director, he saw Holliday as more than a long-term friend who once smacked into each other on Kanawha Valley gridirons.

Hamrick saw a driven, devoted coach, master recruiter, one-time national champion and somebody who could lead the Thundering Herd into the next decade. With that, Holliday donned the green blazer Friday as the program's 29th head football coach.

Holliday formally accepted the job in an emotional press conference before a packed Alumni Lounge at the Memorial Student Center, seemingly before more people than will attend the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl between the Herd and Ohio. Holliday, who was Bill Stewart's associate head coach at rival West Virginia, replaces Mark Snyder, who resigned Nov. 29 after going 22-37 in five seasons.

"We took a look at a lot of coaches," Hamrick said. "And there were a lot of coaches out there, but we just kept coming back, just kept circling back to Doc. And you kept asking yourself, 'Why not?' Not 'Why?' 'Why not?' And I could never answer that. That's where it went.

"You've got a West Virginia native, you got a man who grew up 20 miles from here. He's well known in the state, he's well known all over the East Coast recruiting, Florida, where we have to recruit from to get the players we need to compete in Conference USA. He's been around Urban Meyer, who I admire tremendously.

"He's been at West Virginia at a great program, he's been at N.C. State at a great program. They've won; he knows the formula for winning. You have to get players, and I think he can get players."

A Hurricane native and former West Virginia linebacker, Holliday has shown a knack for getting players in 31 years of coaching - 23 at West Virginia, five at North Carolina State and three at Florida. He has held the title of assistant or associate head coach for almost half of his career.

Early in his career, he helped the Mountaineers lay deep recruiting roots in Florida, and he plans no let-up along those lines while sporting a green shirt.

"We started in '81 or '82, but at that time there wasn't a whole lot of people recruiting the state of Florida," he said. "I saw myself, a guy from Iowa State and a guy from Michigan, that's it. That said, everybody's down there now. I've got a lot of ex-players I've recruited who are coaches down there right now, got a lot of ties there.

HUNTINGTON - Mike Hamrick didn't downplay his 30-plus year relationship with John "Doc" Holliday, joking that it served as "pretty extensive research."

But when it came time for Hamrick to make the hire that stands to define his tenure as Marshall's athletic director, he saw Holliday as more than a long-term friend who once smacked into each other on Kanawha Valley gridirons.

Hamrick saw a driven, devoted coach, master recruiter, one-time national champion and somebody who could lead the Thundering Herd into the next decade. With that, Holliday donned the green blazer Friday as the program's 29th head football coach.

Holliday formally accepted the job in an emotional press conference before a packed Alumni Lounge at the Memorial Student Center, seemingly before more people than will attend the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl between the Herd and Ohio. Holliday, who was Bill Stewart's associate head coach at rival West Virginia, replaces Mark Snyder, who resigned Nov. 29 after going 22-37 in five seasons.

"We took a look at a lot of coaches," Hamrick said. "And there were a lot of coaches out there, but we just kept coming back, just kept circling back to Doc. And you kept asking yourself, 'Why not?' Not 'Why?' 'Why not?' And I could never answer that. That's where it went.

"You've got a West Virginia native, you got a man who grew up 20 miles from here. He's well known in the state, he's well known all over the East Coast recruiting, Florida, where we have to recruit from to get the players we need to compete in Conference USA. He's been around Urban Meyer, who I admire tremendously.

"He's been at West Virginia at a great program, he's been at N.C. State at a great program. They've won; he knows the formula for winning. You have to get players, and I think he can get players."

A Hurricane native and former West Virginia linebacker, Holliday has shown a knack for getting players in 31 years of coaching - 23 at West Virginia, five at North Carolina State and three at Florida. He has held the title of assistant or associate head coach for almost half of his career.

Early in his career, he helped the Mountaineers lay deep recruiting roots in Florida, and he plans no let-up along those lines while sporting a green shirt.

"We started in '81 or '82, but at that time there wasn't a whole lot of people recruiting the state of Florida," he said. "I saw myself, a guy from Iowa State and a guy from Michigan, that's it. That said, everybody's down there now. I've got a lot of ex-players I've recruited who are coaches down there right now, got a lot of ties there.

"We're going to recruit Florida, but we're going to do a great job in West Virginia and Ohio. There are a lot of players in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey. Georgia's got to be a good place for us. We've got to hit the ground running, we've got to outwork people for those players."

His career includes 20 bowl games, including the BCS national championship after the 2006 season, which Florida won. As a position coach, he has tutored 11 players that have gone on to the NFL, four All-Americans and 16 all-conference or All-East honorees.

Holliday remembered his Florida stay fondly, saying he was a neighbor to Gator basketball assistant Donnie Jones. Jones, now in his third year as MU's basketball coach, attended the press conference and gave his personal welcome.

Meyer sent his congratulations from the Sunshine State: "Coach Holliday was an integral part of our staff for three years, including the 2006 BCS national championship, and his son Cade has been an outstanding part of our team for the past five years."

Holliday met Thundering Herd players for the first time after practice Thursday, but will not interfere with interim coach Rick Minter's operation of the team for the bowl game, which takes place Dec. 26 at Detroit's Ford Field. He will have plenty of work in the meantime - relocating from Morgantown, assembling a new staff and filling out a recruiting class on short notice.

Then he faces a 2010 schedule that begins with Ohio State and WVU, the latter in Huntington.

His compensation package will be in the $600,000 range annually along the five-year contract, with $175,000 the base salary. He has a $3 million buyout clause, but for one school, which Hamrick will specify each year. With Holliday's deep blue and gold roots, one can figure that school won't be, say, Texas A&M-Kingsville.

When he regained control over his emotions, Holliday felt at ease in his new colors and his new role.

"I want you to understand this: This is not a steppingstone job for me," he said. "This is a major Division I job that I want, and I plan on being here. This is one of the top programs in the country, and I'm blessed to be a part of it, and I'm going to work hard to make it a program you can be proud of."

Reach Doug Smock at 304-348-5130 or dougsm...@wvgazette.com.

More Articles in Sports 1 | 2 | Next Page »

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  260
  • Reputation:   0
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  10/23/2007

link is not working for me.

also - he is not leaving WVA - since marshall is still in WVA - but he IS leaving WVU. ;):D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  46
  • Reputation:   0
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  07/20/2009

I wish Doc success at MU, but am a little upset that he took a couple players with him that he recruited to WVU with WVU money. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...

It appears you are using ad blocking tools.  This site is supported through ads.  Please disable in order to enjoy full access to The Bulls Pen.  Registration is free and reduces ads.