Colin Dunlap: Well hello folks. I am quite certain there might be a question or two about a certain Mr. Holgorsen. And, yes, it is H-O-L-G-O-R-S-E-N
That said, I'll be back at 1 p.m. to answer the questions live. But, go ahead and drop in what you want to ask starting now.
Colin Dunlap: Hello folks....let's get going.
Will: What's been the general reaction about the hire?
Colin Dunlap: Seems many, many people are very excited about the offensive possibilities that come with the Holgorsen hiring.
rekterx: Colin, are you in Morgantown for Ollie's 1:00 PM presser?
Colin Dunlap: Nope...really no reason for me to be there for it. I don't expect anything to come out of it that I don't already know.
WVMule: Shouldn't you be at the Luck presser?
Colin Dunlap: What is he going to say that is "new." In reality, haven't I made this press conference a moot point with my reporting this week?
WVMule: What are the odds that Stew steps down after the bowl game?
Colin Dunlap: Not seeing that happen.
Jeff Mullen: Who's got better connections than Cassazza. I probably should have seen this coming, right?
Colin Dunlap: Jeff Mullen is a good man. Don't lose sight of that. Let's remember there is a human quotient with people losing their jobs --- it isn't something to celebrate in. That said, Jeff had his detractors and I could see, sometimes, why. But I am convinced there were times he wasn't calling all the plays.
b.starks: what do you think of Pitt's hiring of Haywood?
Colin Dunlap: Time will tell. He could be great, he could be a dud. I laugh at the notion that, before he even steps to a podium, he a "bad hire." Who was Mike Tomlin when he was hired? He's been OK.
Will: I would assume that WV looks more attractive to potential recruits?
Colin Dunlap: One would think. Yes. If I am kind that wants to make it a backyard football game, spread things out and make as many first downs as possible, Morgantown is my place.
ksklem: still not sleeping? lol
Colin Dunlap: Never. 3 hours a night. I mean that.
WVMule: FYI...presser was delayed because Casazza couldnt get there in time.
Colin Dunlap: Was he walking his dog?
GOFM: We've heard different stories about whether Holgersen turned down Pitt, or Pitt turned down Holgersen. Which is true?
Colin Dunlap: I have been told, from a very, very, very good source that I trust, that Pitt ended the negotiation and that, also, they were never as seriously along as had been reported.
Greg in Clarksburg: I do have a quick question about the bowl game: Have you gotten any sense that the coaching staff and/or the players have gotten distracted by all the news about the coaching changes to the point that we will embarrass ourselves on national TV AGAIN? By the way, love your coverage; I've stopped reading the local papers and just check your stuff out online. Please don't ever stop.
Colin Dunlap: Wait, WVU is playing in a bowl? Almost forgot.
Colin Dunlap: Anyway...I could see this as a major distraction. A huge one.
WVMule: Yea...Pitt ended talks because Holgy told them PITT SUCKS & WVU ROCKS!
Colin Dunlap: I am certain that was the precise terminology in the negotiation process.
MtneerChris: Any word on who on the current coaching staff will be retained? Other than the defensive staff, I mean...
Colin Dunlap: Mullen and Johnson gone. Probably McMichael, too. Galloway will stay. Beatty on the fence.
Guest: If Mullen wasn't calling the plays, then who was?
Colin Dunlap: The second half of the Gator Bowl seemed very, very, very fishy to me. Almost like the head man grabbed the headset.
b.starks: The coach in waiting do you think this will be smooth or an uncomfortable situation?
Colin Dunlap: As comfortable as riding a horse without a saddle from Morgantown to Stillwater.
Chris: Will recruiting go up or down because of this hirer? THis year? Next Year?
Colin Dunlap: Will be different, for sure. I think the recruiting of certain positions (RB, WR and even OL) can, and will, get better.
Finny: Colin...Appreciate all for your reporting all year. Solid job. What are you hearing on the D side of the ball regarding the staff?
Colin Dunlap: Everyone will stay ---- or at least have that option.
adam in lex: beatty on the fence by his choice or DH's?
Colin Dunlap: By Mr. Holgorsen's.
WVUPensGuy: Did T. Boone..err, OK State...make any effort to retain Holgy?
Colin Dunlap: Indeed they did. It wasn't so much about the money, more about the opportunity to be in charge -- and also a chance at stability.
Dean: Colin, just how aware was Stewart of what was going on? Please tell me he wasn't totally in the dark. Whether you like him or not, he doesn't deserve that.
Colin Dunlap: Read the Post-Gazette tomorrow.
Colin Dunlap: Or maybe even the website later today.
WVMule: If you were at the presser what would you ask Luck?
Colin Dunlap: Probably not much, to be honest.
Dave: People are saying Stew will only be a figurehead coach. What do you think ?
Colin Dunlap: I would tend to agree with that statement.
dutch: Do you think Univesity will retain Stewart after his contract ends?
Colin Dunlap: I know he has that option. Whether he wants to accept it is up to him.
WVMule: Mickey working over Luck...have you told Holgy he has to win 10 games ever year or get fired.
Colin Dunlap: Seriously? Mickey? Come on.
WVMule: Luck said Stewart was informed on Nov. 14.
Colin Dunlap: And that's your story for the Post-Gazette later....but with a lot more detail.
Chris: Colin, great comment about the human factor, all of us tend to forget that there are wives and families behind these job changes, and during the holiday season
Colin Dunlap: Agree 100 percent. Dave Johnson and Jeff Mullen didn't want to get fired. They didn't want the units they coach to lose any games. That wasn't their aim.
rekterx: Cassazza downplayed this when I asked him about this. But where does Mitch Vingle get off claiming on WCHS radio the other night that he broke this story when I know for a fact that you were the one who tipped off the public the day before Vingle "broke" the story?
Colin Dunlap: I'm not one to watch the scoreboard. I know what I know, though.
W. Gwinn: I love you man. and I love OL for realizing we were going down hill. ON my post as tke709, I brought about Johnson and offering scholarships and such. Any ideas of our new line coach? Thank you for breaking the story.
Colin Dunlap: Bredenbaugh --- I think that is how it is spelled --- at Arizona. He would be your front-runner.
WVMule: Luck says that Stewart is the coach and will make all football decisions until 2012...now do you believe that?
Colin Dunlap: No.
W. Gwinn: Good or bad hire? or only time will tell? knowledge? experience?
Colin Dunlap: Ask me on Dec. 7, 2012.
WVMule: Mick hammering Luck over donor influence.
Colin Dunlap: Not interested. I like Mickey, he is a legend. But wake me when he breaks a story or writes something that isn't tinged with homerism.
Chris: Do you think Geno Fits the AIRRAID style of Offense? Could this raise him to a NFL first rounder or drop him off the radar?
Colin Dunlap: You mean EER-Raid? That is what I am calling it.
Geno Smith won't be a first-rounder under any circumstances. No.
ksklem: will DH still wear his flip flops in winter in Morgantown?
Colin Dunlap: He doesn't wear them in winter. Where did you get that from?
WVMule: Luck says he made the decision in consultation with Clements...donors didn't influence him...again do you buy that?
Colin Dunlap: To a degree, yes. Not fully, but somewhat.
WVMule: Why you smacking Geno?
Colin Dunlap: Not smacking him.....you honestly, in your heart think he has the stuff to be an NFL first-round pick?
PbaWVU: How does Casteel feel about the hire? In your opinion does Casteel stick around after next year?
Colin Dunlap: I think as long as WVU is winning, Jeff Casteel is around for awhile...if not around forever.
b.starks: had R. Clarke not fumbled in OT vs UConn would we not be talking about this?
Colin Dunlap: 50-50 shot.
dutch: Do you know if the new coach is married with family?
Colin Dunlap: divorced. and that matters none. totally irrelevant and unrelated to his ability to coach football.
rekterx: Please give us your prediction on how focused the team and staff will be as they approach the bowl game. And do you think they will be ready to play?
Colin Dunlap: I think they could struggle. I really do.
fireman: Colin I have been hearing reports from people close to WVU football and they are saying stew is going to retire after bowl game. They say is doesnt want his players to lose focus so will announce after. Your thoughts on this and could this be a possibility.
Colin Dunlap: Anything is a possibility. Is it probable? No. Could it happen -- sure.
ksklem: Will DH buy, rent, or stay in hotel suite in Morgantown?
Colin Dunlap: I am making the call he posts up at the Waterfront for awhile, surveys the scene then gets a luxury town home.
KeyserCouchburner: Chances Sands stays for another season?
Colin Dunlap: I think he does. Some depends on the NFL labor situation, which we will find out more about perhaps this week, but I think, ultimately, he stays.
b.starks: Did you think we had a good chance to win the bowl before Holgorsen?
Colin Dunlap: Yes.
freelilly: Do you think we will lose any current players because of the staff changes? I cant imagine any offensive player leaving (other than Brunetti)
Colin Dunlap: You can't? How about the tight ends and fullbacks? You know -- the positions this new offense won't need.
PbaWVU: Who's your favorite to win the Big East next year?
Colin Dunlap: West Virginia.
PbaWVU: What current player or players will benefit the most from Holgorsen's system?
Colin Dunlap: Tavon Austin, Ivan McCartney, Don Barclay (he will finally get to move to guard) and maybe Trey Johnson.
Will: Do you like the "coach in waiting" concept? If Im the head coach, I dont like someone looking over my shoulder.
Colin Dunlap: This is a truly unique situation, though. It is closed-ended on the back end. It isn't like Mack Brown, where Will Muschamp didn't know when he was done. Holgorsen knows when Stewart is finished before this situation even begins.
R: If Barclay moves to guard who's going to play LT?
Colin Dunlap: The position isn't as important in this offense. One of the young kids can play out there.
ksklem: Oliver Luck....your grade/comment on his handling of the hiring process?
Colin Dunlap: A+ when it all comes out.
EERinKY: Besides the Bradenbaugh guy from Arizona....anyone else you are hearing about offensive additions?
Colin Dunlap: A guy at Stephen F. Austin.
dutch: Did West Virginia consider any other coach besides Holgorsen?
Colin Dunlap: Not that I am aware of. No.
pgheer: Being that you received info at the Duquesne hoops game, it had to be Mike Parsons that was your source that night, correct? and if so was he giving you info on direction from Luck? I love the move by the way
Colin Dunlap: Not even close on fingering Mr. Parsons as the source. One thing --- I am not giving up my sources so stop guessing. Second thing -- it is patently unfair to paint Mr. Parsons as the source. He was not.
Nicky the Greek: Barclay to guard? Please explain? Isn't your best lineman always the tackle protecting the QB's back??
Colin Dunlap: Barclay is a mauler, an inside guy who beats people up. He is a natural guard.
Greg: Am I allowed to feel bad for Coach Stew?
Colin Dunlap: Sure. I think many do. The man loves the university and the state. There is absolutely no question about it.
Chris: was this hire and Pitt's a reaction to TCU coming in?
Colin Dunlap: Not at all. Why does everyone (or anyone) think any moves will be made because one school is joining the conference.
Nicky the Greek: Was Barclay playing tackle out of need or poor coaching decision?
Colin Dunlap: Out of need.
EERinKY: What about the rest of the defensive staff? Are they going to stick?
Colin Dunlap: Again --- the defensive staff will all have the option to stay. Will they? That is another question.
p: do you think we have the horses in the ranks to improve the line play next year
Colin Dunlap: Not really, no. And I hate to say it, but Spain can't play in this offense unless he does some serious getting in shape.
pgheer: Is Mike Kerin out as Director of Football Ops with this hire?
Colin Dunlap: I don't know. I sure hope not. Mike is a good and loyal man who is one of the finest at what he does in the country. Quite honestly, not many people can make that claim.
TheVLC: Do you think that Clark and Alston are the type of backs that Coach Holgorsen will be looking for, or would he lean towards moving Austin back to RB instead of receiver?
Colin Dunlap: Trey Johnson is the type of back.
Chris: With Dave W out at Pitt, does WVU get back into Western PA for 5 to 8 players a year recruiting?
Colin Dunlap: There is no reason why they shouldn't. But, you know, WVU should not come into western Pa. for the sake of just doing it to get numbers. They should make sure they players can play.
Brad: Will Dana bring any recruits with him?
Colin Dunlap: I would not think so...it could be a tough sell as the places are so geographically far apart.
Cassie: you made the comment that Geno does not have the potential to be a NFL first rounder..does WVU have anyone on Offense you think could be a NFL first rounder?
Colin Dunlap: Right now? Maybe. If McCartney decides he wants to work hard and learn how to block, the future is limitless for the kid.
freelilly: Mike Joseph. do you think he stays. while our guys have had less injuries, they just seem outta shape and not as explosive as in the past. I know he handles more than football so I wasnt sure if his job was safe
Colin Dunlap: Seriously...you are asking about a strength coach? No idea. I deal with the big stories. Not to downplay Mr. Joseph, but there are bigger things at play here.
wvunooch: Does Holgy have any connections in Florida with recruiting? Will he bring in an assistant who does, so we can we continue down this strong pipeline?
Colin Dunlap: I cannot say this any plainer: His offense will recruit for him. Yes, it will be important to develop relationships and the such, but his offense will recruit for him.
Chris: 5 years down the Road..is Holgorsen and Haywood still at WVU/Pitt.. who has one more games and Big East Championships?
Colin Dunlap: Hard to make that prediction. I would bet both are still there.
Finny: Colin: Have you heard any reactions from the players regarding this hire?
Colin Dunlap: No. Stewart has not even told them yet. Wasn't planning on telling them until a meeting on Saturday. He had the chance to call them together for a meeting but didn't. I find that a gross tactical error.
Nicky the Greek: Whose Holgorsen's guy to be his OC in 2012??
Colin Dunlap: Arizona offensive coordinator or guy at Stephen F. Austin. That's what I have been told could happen.
Finny: Do you think DH will call the O plays even as HC...use more of a CoOC?
Colin Dunlap: Yes, I think he will. Kind of like a Rich-Calvin situation.
WVMule: Holgy has signed term sheet....Micky asking if Luck has run background check on Holgy. Micky is being mean to Oliver.
Colin Dunlap: And I am sure Mick had on a hat or a piece of clothing with a Flying WV. Solid objectivity there, huh.
freelilly: Why not ask about Joseph, someone has to be in charge of getting those Olinemen in shape. If they stink again so will our EER Raid offense
Colin Dunlap: Yes. They are in charge of getting themselves in shape.
Dave: What will they do with the players at tight end and fullback?
Colin Dunlap: Maybe see if they remember how to tackle from their days in high school....you can never have enough d-ends and backers.
Colin Dunlap: Alrighty, people. Thanks a million. I have to run. It has been a great, great chat.