Troy head coach Neal Brown is expected to take the same job at West Virginia, sources told FootballScoop on Friday.
Yahoo’s Pete Thamel first reported the news.
Brown replaces Dana Holgorsen, who left after eight seasons to take the head job at Houston.
The 38-year-old has been at Troy for the past four seasons. After a 4-8 debut, Brown strung together a 3-season run that saw the Trojans go 31-8 with one Sun Belt title (plus a 20-4 mark in conference play) and three bowl victories.
Brown has never coached in West Virginia or worked with Holgorsen previously, but his hiring still provides continuity for WVU. Brown is a first generation Air Raid disciple in that he played a season at wide receiver for Mike Leach at Kentucky.
Brown began coaching at UMass in 2003, then served as a position coach at Sacred Heart, Delaware and Troy before becoming the Trojans’ offensive coordinator in 2008. From there, Brown coordinated offenses at Texas Tech and Kentucky before his return to Troy as head coach in 2015.
West Virginia went 8-4 in 2018 and played in a de facto Big 12 semifinal game against Oklahoma to close the regular season, yet the Mountaineers are set for a rebuilding year in 2019. In addition to quarterback Will Grier, WVU is set to lose top receivers David Sills V and Gary Jennings, Jr., tight end Trevon Wesco and its top two defensive players in nose tackle Kenny Bigelow and linebacker David Long.
The WVU job will represent a significant step up in salary for Brown. Holgorsen made $3.6 million in 2018, while Troy paid Brown $810,000.
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