Four days after West Virginia closed a 7-5 regular season, West Virginia released a statement saying head coach Dana Holgorsen will return for a sixth season in 2016.
From Mountaineers AD Shane Lyons:
“Dana Holgorsen will return as our head football coach in 2016. After evaluating our football program after the close of the regular season, I believe that continuity is best for our program.
“I know that Dana, his staff and everyone who supports Mountaineer football was disappointed with how our regular season ended, following a four-game winning streak.
“Dana and I will continue to work together to strengthen our football program. No one wants to win more than Dana and I, and we will work together to ensure success.”
In many ways, Holgorsen’s 2015 team was the most complete he’s fielded — at least since joining the Big 12. The Mountaineers ranked 24th nationally in pass efficiency defense, 16th in rushing and tied for second in turnovers forced.
But West Virginia was undone by an uncharacteristic inability to throw the ball (75th in passing efficiency, down from fifth in 2012) and a continued struggle with penalties — 2015 was the fourth straight year WVU committed more penalties than the year prior, dropping to 121st in FBS.
Plus, an October schedule that called for four consecutive games against the Big 12’s best teams, three of them on the road, halted any momentum a successful September built.
A bowl win will do wonders to assuage any angst in Morgantown. But, in typical fashion, the schedule-makers did the Mountaineers no favors. They’ll face Arizona State in the Phoenix-based Cactus Bowl Jan. 2 at 10:15 p.m. ET.
Holgorsen is 35-28 in his five seasons at the helm.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.