MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Rapid reaction from Dana Holgorsen’s news conference on Tuesday, which I expected to sound like a FEMA briefing but instead heralded the power of positive thinking:

“We’re THAT close to being a damn good football team.”
Yup, in the same way Mars is THAT close to Jupiter.

“We’re sitting here at 2-2 with both losses coming on the road to undefeated teams.”
With both wins coming at home against Georgia State and William & Mary.

“Because I evaluate him every day in practice—you don’t.”
Holgorsen, asked why Clint Trickett (the team’s most experienced quarterback) has played only six snaps through four games, snapped off that retort to 90-year-old Mickey Furfari (the room’s most experienced sports writer).

“We can field a punt—that would be a start.”
Addressing WVU’s eight lost fumbles—second-most in the FBS—Holgorsen fixated on the two crucial turnovers by Mario Alford at Oklahoma and Ronald Carswell at Maryland. Back-breaking mistakes, for sure, but they were just part of the problem. Take out those fumbles and WVU still has six, which would be tied for third-worst in the FBS.

“We’ll work it today (at practice). I’ll blow a whistle and say, ‘We just got a turnover, run out there and score.’ We’re having trouble scoring period.”
Holgorsen flashing some quick-change sarcasm on the topic of West Virginia scoring just seven points off its eight defensive takeaways this season.

“When a couple of things happened earlier (at Maryland), everybody kind of got all wide-eyed and said, ‘Oh crap.’ That can’t happen. We can’t play like that. It’s 100-percent coaching. I can’t have guys that are scared to make a mistake.”
Fear the turtle, don’t fear the game.

“I need to change my mentality if I want (the players) to change their mentality. I’m going to expect good things to happen. If you sit there and worry about calling the perfect play, then you’re going to call a bad one. That mentality needs to go away. We need to relax, and we need to get out there and we need to expect good things to happen. Right now, offensively, I don’t see that happening. And that needs to exist with me.”
Hey, I recognize Holgorsen is only a third-year head coach, and thus he should remain open to re-evaluating his approach to the psychological tone he sets for his team. This sounds like a boss questioning himself and grasping for answers, but if you can’t question yourself after a 37-0 train wreck at Maryland, then when can you?

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Comments

  • Jim

    It's bad that WVU started the season not knowing who was going to be QB. And I think they still don't have a clue.? Very unorganized!!!!!

    • Hoppy

      Jim,
      You do not select a QB just on the basis that his knows your particular system. Do you really think Millard can make the throws that are necessary with the "Air-Raid"? Ford Childress may not 100% know the system but he has the ability to make the necessary throws and the system can be taught to him. Please study the different nuances of conducting a successful football team before opening your big mouth. You people are soo short-sided and weak minded just like the clowns that write theses articles from the WV Metro News...

  • Chris

    Just about the worst piece you have ever written, and that is saying a lot.

    • EB

      It is the worst piece he has ever written, he is just stirring the pot. sad.

      • Big Larry

        Sorry to disagree but it is an excellent piece...

        Why is it that when you Holgorsen trolls and relatives hear the truth...you just can't stand it???

        Thank you Allan Taylor for telling it like it is...

  • Ratman

    What's a matter Alan. Anything you disagree with or steps on your toes comes out? Mickey is still mad over his buddy Bill and we all know it. We also know Vill was a great guy but should not have been ou head coach.

  • Gman

    I have been a fan of Luck since my first visit to a live WVU game when he was QB. Followed his name as it went through the NFL then on to the business side of sports. I have no doubt in his abilities.
    Holgerson .... I've been waiting for this "Air Raid offense" to take off for 3 years now. If you cant build your program in those 3 years - your not going to build it at all. In the real world of building, you bill as you show progress. Ummmm Your invoice is based on how much progress to date? And no, I am not a fair weathered 'eer. I'll support them regardless. No doubt you are a great O Coordinator. But overall leadership may not be your strong suit.

    • Bryan

      You must have been asleep, what would you call last years offense and the numbers Geno, Tavon and Steadman put up? That's a lot to replace, but I feel sure all will come around and the mountaineers will once again be flying high. With that said before everyone piles it on, I was only talking about the offense not the team overall.

    • cutty77

      let me give some stats. Coach Donny N was here for over 20 years. Then 2001 Rich Rod comes on Board,then leaves in 2007,then comes Stew for 3 years,now Dana this is his true 2nd year,so lets fire Him too,get another coach then run him off in 2 or 3 years. When does it stop. Any Coach worth a Damm wouldn't touch WVU. Remember we ran off Bobby Bowden. We ain't the smartest people in the Country. lol

  • Phil M.

    What is all this fire Luck crap. Without him we're still playing in the old Big East. He's not playing or coaching.

    He's a smart guy that can only further WVU's cause into the future.

    So enough of the fire Luck stuff already.

    • Big Larry

      HOW OLIVER LUCK BECAME GREAT

      Everyone keeps saying..."Oliver Luck is so Great and wonderful...Look at what he did...he got us into the Big 12..."

      NOW HERE'S THE TRUTH:

      All Oliver Luck did was make a phone call...any half wit moron could have done that....just like he made a phone call to the SEC and the ACC....

      A phone call...A phone call....what else did he or could he do?...Did he Take them all out to dinner? NO. Did he meet with BIG 12 officials and convince them to invite us? NO. Did he mesmerize them with his great negotiating skills? NO. All he did was make a phone call.....and say... " Can we join your conference?" That's it...

      HERE IS HOW IT PLAYED OUT:

      1. The BIG EAST falls apart.

      2. WVU gets nervous & desperate

      3. The BIG 12 is on the verge of falling apart

      4. The BIG 12 gets nervous and desperate

      5. Oliver Luck calls the BIG 12 and asks to join.

      6. The BIG 12 considers WVU and Louisville

      7. The BIG 12 chooses WVU

      8. The BIG 12 has second thoughts and now wants Louisville

      9. Jay Rockefeller makes a phone call to the BIG 12

      10...The BIG 12 selects WVU

      11. Oliver Luck becomes an Icon in West Virginia

      And now you know....

      • chad

        It's called negotiating moron and I'm sure Luck has acomplished much more in his life than you.

      • wenkev

        Jay Rockefeller wouldn't know how to call home!

      • Janem

        Sounds like you and William are smelling the same armpits.... On a roll today Larry..

      • Janem

        Lie you have no Idea ...you don't know nothing about Oliver luck on the job he does you better go back to sniffing armpits

  • Ratman

    What an ignorant bunch you are. Without Oliver Luck out athletic program would be in a conference that is absolutely not relevant with no revenue. As for Dana, he is the coach and absolutely has the right to play whoever he sees fit and not who you, I, or Mickey sees fit. Mickey is still upset about his buddy Bill that never should have had the job anyways. If you are true fans support our players and let things work out. If not, Pitt is about 75 miles north, go for it and leave the true Mounties alone.

  • pghmountaineer

    Man, I'll say this, it's amazing for someone who has performed well below average as a coach for the past year and 4 games to be arrogant and in your face. Wouldn't we all love to put out results like that and then have the arrogance to basically tell people to go pound salt.
    Now there's a guy who apparently is under no pressure to perform.

  • cutty77

    I love Mickey as much as anybody,but he doesn't have a free pass to be a Horse's You Know What. The problem in this country,is The Press think they run everything. Can say whatever they want to whomever they want. Then use that little weak BS Line.I'M JUST TRY YO DO MY JOB.LOL

    • susanf

      The man just asked a question! Sounds to me like Holgerson is a little sensitive! Can't take criticism, perhaps?? Or maybe he is just a rude, arrogant, coarse, crude obnoxious person. In other words, the complete opposite of Coach Stewart, God rest his soul.

      • Janem

        Ask that question to Alabama head coach guarantee you'll get just about the same answer.. Maybe worse

        • Randy

          Win 4 National Championships and he can answer anyway he wants to. LOL

    • William

      @Cutty - You like guys with POOR CHARACTER? What a mess WVU football is!
      Tell me some good things about HOLGERSON? I'll be waiting to see how long the list is.

      • Uncle Unctuous

        1. He knows how to spell "Holgorsen".
        2. He doesn't overuse caps lock, at least not in public.

  • Steve

    Mickey has made it known several times that he doesn't like Dana every since he has been here, so this exchange doesn't bother me one bit. If you have listened to any of the press conferences, there is always a strain between them.

    • WV07

      Mickey could have coached this team to 2-2 record as well.

    • WV07

      I think Morgantown High plays William and Mary this weekend and Lewis Co plays Georgia St.

      • Chirp

        Lewis Co.would win. Coach Vincent is a great coach!

  • Joe Cool

    My arrogance detector just went crazy

  • Phil M.

    Everyone knows Mickey's old but they respect his loyalty to WVU and the professional he has always been.

    Not good, sounds like he knows that Mickey has never been in favor of him being the coach.

    Still you prove your a bigger man and act as if it doesn't bother you.

    No doubt he's feeling the strain of not winning and looking real bad doing so.

    • jr

      I think it is time fer him to look fer another Job...!

      • Big John

        Mickey is too old for another job.

  • Hillbilly

    WHAT A JOKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Fire LUCK and The rest of the clowns including and The drunken coach

    • jr

      A Big Amen Hillbilly...!

    • Cliff w

      That may be all good to fire the coach, but if you fire him for one non winning season you'll never get a coach with any talent to come coach here! Why would a coach want to be with a program that turns there back on him for ONE bad year. To much pressure. We are not Bama, USC, Texas. The Big East spoiled us. We are going to have down years

    • E. Monroe

      "Fire LUCK and The rest of the clowns including and The drunken coach"

      Written like a drunken coach

  • big tom

    we will never be closer unless the qb play improves drastically. Now I was for FOrd all along, so I am just gonna have to live with his progression and this yr is certainly going to be nasty.
    I don't expect much improved to show up cause our schedule might not allow it..we need to improve our talent , our recruiting has to also improve drastically, remember we aint playin those chumps in the big least every week now, we have to step everything up

    • Big Larry

      Big Tom,

      It can get a lot worse than it is....

      Oliver "I give extended contracts" Luck could give Holgorsen the same deal he gave Huggins....An unconditional contract for life for as long as you live...

      It could happen. Holgorsen is Luck's boy and he loves to give coaches extended contracts...

      Its a scary thought but it definitely could happen if Holgorsen wins another game or two...

  • Medman

    Man, this is getting almost as nasty as Alabama not winning. This press conference sounds like it was a doozy. When he snapped at Mickey Furfari, that tells you a lot about this man's character. After the next four games, it will be awful to be anywhere near this coach.

    • DWM

      I thought it was the perfect response. Mickey asked why he was not playing his best, most experienced quarterback and the honest answer was that "I evaluate him every day in practice and you don't" (and read between the lines, he is not our best). If all three quarterbacks are close in allowing us to win, why wouldn't you play the youngest?

      • E. Monroe

        Exactly.

      • Neal

        Absolutely the HC has the right to choose who ever he wants as his starting QB, but in my book this HC needs a few more wins under his belt before he has the right to be sarcastic to a member of the WVU Sports HOF who has been covering the Mountaineers since 1947. Holgerson needs to show more maturity. His lack of it seems very evident to me both on and off the field.

        • Alum

          Have you read many of MF's columns over the last year, especially since around April of this year? Maturity cuts both ways.

          I always enjoyed reading MF but this past summer was too much and way over the top. He lost me as a reader.

        • Vinnie

          Why would he "play nice" with Furfari. Furfari has gone above and beyond to destroy this coach and the athletic department. Mickey, go write a book about the good 'ole days and leave football to 21st century thinkers. Yes; things are not like the old days. Some better some worse.

  • David J.

    Here is what I don't understand. All through fall practice it was Millard and Trickett. Then out of the blue we are to believe Ford had a revelation and became Payton Manning? I just don't get it.

    He might want to think about getting Mickey on his bad side. That happens the rest of the state will follow.

    • WV07

      I agree David....He shows Mickey disrespect and it could domino on him. And coach needs to wake up. We barely beat William and Mary at home after they had an impressive 2-10 season. Oh yeah and Ga. St...one of the worst teams in college football. Take the combined score of our two losses and the final would be 53-7.Hardly being "THAT CLOSE" love WVU and am proud to be from there and have gone to school there but it is really hard to support this joke of a coaching staff. I still support the players.

      • William

        WHAT A MESS WVU FOOTBALL IS!
        It is only a matter of time till Holgerson is gone
        He is not a Mountaineer and never will be
        He was hire with no experience
        He a given an out outrages salary
        He had character issues
        He can't stop saying 'YOU KNOW'
        He can care less about West Virginia, he is only here for the MONEY and he will be run out of Morgantown
        Why would anyone hire this guy as a Head Coach?
        He looks terrible in press conf. in all black!
        How many business in WV was he thrown out of?
        WVU has no leadership, he said that himself
        He was left some great players(Bill Stewarts) last year and look what happened
        IF YOU HIRE A LEADER THAT DOESN'T HAVE GREAT CHARACTER YOU MIGHT END UP IN A BIG MESS!
        How many great things can WVU fans say about Holgerson, compared to Bill Stewart?
        Are there any WVU fans that are PROUD to have Holgerson Head Coach at WVU?

        • Janem

          If Bill Stewart left so many great players where are they today just remember this is Holgosens only two years into recruiting if we got great players left form Bill Stewart days ..Wow where are they... Our team should be full of juniors and seniors we don't have them .... Bill Stewart was a good assistant coach .. He didn't last long at VMI they fired him there .. Accused him of being racist as far as I understand. That's not very much experience... As a great person yes... Head coach No way. May he RIP...

          • Harpers Ferry

            The reason that Stewart's recruits aren't playing for WVU is because they are playing for the Rams and the Jets. Geno Smith, Tavon Austin, and Stedman Bailey. Ever heard of them? They were Stew's recruits.

            As Jim Calhoun would say, "Get some facts, and come back and see me!"

          • Janem

            I know Bailey I know Austin I know Smith are in the NFL where are the rest of them.where's the juniors where the seniors ... That's just three It don't make up a class.... Maybe you can't count..... Stewart didn't bring in the players..

          • Jim Summers

            Did you ever think that it may be a coaching problem instead of a Bill Stewart recruiting problem? An example may be the defensive problems we had last year compared to this years performance. Now look at special teams. I get tired of the Stew bashing. His numbers speak for theirself. Recruiting was never better than the Bill Stewart years. He had a way with the recruits and the parents. It will be interesting to see what the future brings. Sometimes you get what you ask for and you may not like the results.

          • old female grad

            Incredible! In one sentence, you say that Stewart was accused of being a racist. In another following sentence, you say he was a great person!!

        • Adam

          William...
          How many times can you destroy the English language and punctuation? You fools know nothing about football.

      • William

        Mickey Furfari is a good man with GREAT CHARACTER. He will get the last laugh when Holgerson buys a one way ticket out of Morgantown and back to Houston.
        How come I never see WVU fans say many good things about Holgerson?

        • Rick

          They'd like to but they grew up knowing that telling a lie is not a good thing.

      • Shawn

        Mickey is way past his prime and needs to hang it up.

        • Martinsburg Resident

          AGREED! He has nothing positive to report on WVU now... show him respect, but some people just don't know when to hang it up.

        • FungoJoe

          Hey Shawn, how's your 9-3 and 8-4 predictions coming??? Hehehehehe.

    • William

      Does anyone know how many times Holgerson said 'YOU KNOW' in this interview? Let see who can guess the correct answer.

      • Janem

        Who cares you moron... Sounds like your high on smelling armpits again.... Yullllllk just like your post is

        • susanf

          It is interesting to note that the Holgertrolls resort to insults and name calling when their beloved Coach is criticized. Seems they are rather thin-skinned and sensitive like he is. And equally rude and obnoxious.

      • Uncle Unctuous

        Approximately the same number of times per post in which you use caps lock and misspell the guy's last name.

    • Greg

      Mickey has been on his bad side from day one. I find it hard to believe that Mickey has any influence over anybody after the embarrassing hack jobs on Ollie and WVU he was writing this summer. Now it might have been at the urging of his employer or he has just lost touch with reality. Either way, he lost me.

      • Greg

        I meant Dana has been on Mickeys bad side from day one. The world is changing everyday to Mickey's angst. Thus his hack job articles.

    • E. Monroe

      He's already on Mickey's bad side.
      Mickey has an axe to grind because he isn't being catered to. He's written his opinion pieces all year on Oliver, WVU and Dana.
      He needs to retire. Not all of the people in West Virginia appreciate Mickey's recent tactics and the "rest of the state" will hardly follow.
      I thought the answer was appropriate.
      Mickey asked why (but was really doing more than that) and Coach told him why.
      Dana is the coach and he makes his decisions because he and his staff know more about his team than a 90 something year old sports writer or any armchair coaches among the fan base for that matter.

      • Neal

        Show a little respect. I would lay money that Mickey Furfari has been covering the Mountaineers since way before you were born. In 1947 he shared sports editor duties of the DA with Jack Fleming and he's been covering the Mountaineers almost every year since. He's also a member of the WVU Sports Hall of Fame. Every coach up until now has given Mickey great respect. I've noticed several times in Holgerson's press conferences where he has been sarcastic with Mickey (this is one of the reasons i dont think Holgerson is mature enough to be a head coach). If I had Mickey's resume and a coach was sarcastic with me I think I'd be a little peeved too so I don't blame him. Mickey Furfari has earned the right to speak his mind. He's a WVU institution. And no, I've never met the man so don't think I'm a plant.

        • E. Monroe

          Longevity does not equal clarity or objectiveness. He has never liked Dana. He has ripped WVU consistently since the good ole boy network has gone and he needs to retire.
          This is me respecting him. If he keeps up his Chuck Landon like rhetoric, he will soil his well earned historical reputation.
          He doesn't like that the new guard doesn't do things the old way. It's much like the stereotypical lament of "kids these days". Times change and the older you are the more you hate it.

          • Neal

            So far the 'old days' were a lot better than Holgerson's 'new days'. Mickey was 57 when Don Nehlen was hired, 78 when Rich Rodriguez was hired, 85 when Bill Stewart was hired and 88 when Dana Holgerson was hired. I think if he was getting old and set in his ways he probably had plenty of opportunity to do it before now. There was mutual respect between Mickey and those previous coaches. It reveals a great deal about Holgerson's maturity when he treats Mickey like a 10 year old. And this isn't the first time he's done it.

        • WVUfan

          Who gives a crap about Mickey, he is a member fo the press and nothing more....WVU owes him nothing....he has his own agenda and his articles suck.

          • Vinnie

            Amen. Well said. He has a right to his opinion; but no one really cares too much.

      • Janem

        @ E Monroe ... Great job

      • Luke

        Who is Dana?

    • A

      I think Papa Childress got involved to get his boy the job. Problem is, his son just isn't a very good football player.

      • Alum

        He was only an ESPN top 150 recruit. Your right, that's not very good.

      • wvrefugee

        A,
        Do the math!! Where and who did Mr. Luck play with in the pros?? Who was his teammate there?? Equates to a starting QB job!! So much for the "good ole boy" network being gone!!

    • Hoppy

      Why would a coach invest in a qb that will be gone at the end of the season? Ford Childress is the future and a FRESHMAN! Ford Childress will progress throughout the rest of the season. I wish you idiots would learn the game of football before commenting your sewage on this site.

    • Vito

      What And Where Have You Holgorsen Fans Been ?????

      He's A Loser !!!!! He Plays The Coach Role Worse Than Former Loser Rich Rodriguez !!!! And His Role Playing Is Like A 3rd Grade B Actor !!!!!

      Yes, Spend your $$$$$$$ on future "LOSING" Games ! WVU at end of season ??? Last Place !!!!!!!! EABIG1HOGGIE !!!!!