At this point, WVU's current coaching staff is expected to lead the Mountaineers through the Dec. 28 Champs Sports Bowl, against North Carolina State. Holgorsen's deal, according to sources, won't take effect until after the bowl. There are no plans for Holgorsen to coach the bowl game.
Stewart, 58, is finishing his third season as head coach of the Mountaineers and his current contract runs through the 2013 season. Stewart is making $900,000 this year, plus incentives, and his contract states he will be paid $950,000 next season. Stewart has an overall head coaching record of 28-11, but his team's offensive production has been criticized each year. WVU has scored 35 or more points in just nine of 38 games under Stewart, but three of those performances have come in the team's past four games.
The Mountaineers finished this season 9-3 with a share of the Big East conference title, but failed to earn a berth in a BCS game for the third straight year.
The team lost back-toback games to Syracuse and Connecticut in late October. Those defeats dropped WVU to 5-3, then the Mountaineers stormed back to win the final four games.
Meanwhile, Holgorsen, a native of Mount Pleasant, Iowa, has been widely praised for his innovative and productive offenses. No. 14 Oklahoma State (10-2) had the nation's top offense this year, averaging 537.8 yards and 44.9 points per game.
Before joining the Cowboys in January, Holgorsen served as offensive coordinator at Houston and Texas Tech, where his offenses consistently ranked in the top tier across the country. Under his guidance in 2009, Houston had the nation's top offense, averaging 563 yards and 42 points.
That sustained success made Holgorsen, a 1993 graduate of Iowa Wesleyan, attractive to WVU. According to one source, Holgorsen turned down the vacant Pitt head coaching position earlier this week to accept the job at WVU.
Holgorsen's coaching career started at Valdosta State, and he also spent time at Mississippi College and Wingate before moving to Texas Tech in 2000.
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