WVU athletics

Tony Gibson will be named WVU’s defensive coordinator, per sources.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia safeties coach Tony Gibson will be promoted to defensive coordinator, sources confirmed late Wednesday.

The 41-year-old Gibson, who returned to West Virginia last season after a serving on Rich Rodriguez’s staff from 2001-2007, was the leading candidate to land the job ever since Feb. 6, when MetroNews first reported former defensive coordinator Keith Patterson had left for Arizona State.

A school source remained unsure Wednesday about the timing of an official announcement.

Though Gibson has been a defensive coordinator at only one other stop—Division II West Virginia Tech, during the 1999 and 2000 seasons—he served as the secondary coordinator in 2011 at Pitt, where he worked alongside Patterson and shared the concepts that mimic WVU’s current 3-4 scheme.

That 2011 Panthers’ unit ranked third nationally in sacks (3.31 per game), 12th in tackles for loss, 35th in total defense (350.6 yards), 38th in scoring defense (22.8) and 51st in pass-efficiency defense.

Sources said head coach Dana Holgorsen and Gibson are continuing to interview candidates for the defensive line coaching position.

Having built a reputation as a top recruiter, Gibson is a West Virginia native who played his college ball at Glenville State.

He will become WVU’s fourth defensive coordinator in four seasons, though his promotion brings more elements of schematic continuity than previous staff changes.

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  • Peach state fan

    I think D. H. now understands you need coaches that have contacts in the eastern USA and know how to recruit in the northeast, Ohio, Florida and etc..

  • Atlanta Joel

    This better work.
    Dana is running out of time.


    What was West Virginia Tech stats when Gibson was the DC there? I like the fact that Tony is from West Virginia and I am glad he has gotten a chance to do something special here as DC, but the cards are against him... I hope he can find a pass rush with his down linemen and Dana's Offense can take the heat off by staying on the field and scoring while they are out there- sustain long drives with points on the board will help Tony succeed as DC at WVU...
    Let's GOOOOOO!!!! Mountaineeeeers!!!!

  • Maury Franklin

    If Gibson turns out to as good a coordinator as he is a recruiter, his future may be unlimited. Wish him well.

  • 1olewvufan

    WVU's Defensive Coaching situation is more like a 'Who's on First'.


  • jwg66

    I still think we are thin on the DL. And we have ??'s at QB. Hopefully QB will be better in '14 (to me it almost has to be) and the added experience/depth everywhere else will help. One last negative Nellie comment, I don't think ir was wise to start this year out on the road against the Tide..... Kind of reminds me of game 1 against Nebraska years ago. Had a decent team that took about 4 L's to recover from the initiial confidence buster. Guess we will take our TV check and hope for the best.

  • 1olewvufan

    WVU Football: Whose Coaching Defense?
    Does anyone know what is going on? CBS announce Tony Gibson was going to be promoted to DC after Keith Patterson left to follow his buddy Coach Graham to Arizona State, and DL Coach, Eric Slaughter didn't have his contract renewed, so he is out. In comes Davon Cogdell to coach on defense, but he has yet to be assigned a position.

    It has been rumored that WVU was seeking to get Bruce Tall back on its Defensive Coaching Staff. Bruce is a Safeties DB Coach. Then Special Teams Coach, Joe DeForest put on Twitter he was the Safeties Coach, but isn't Tony Gibson the Safeties Coach? Does this mean they couldn't get Coach Tall?

    Who is going to coach the DL? Who is WVU looking at to coach the DL? Not Cogdell, for he is a Linebacker Coach, and this is what Patterson was coaching.

    Shouldn't WVU have held on to Coach Slaughter until they had found his replacement?

    Right now it appears WVU doesn't have a clue who will coaching its defense and Spring Practice begins in 2-weeks. Was the CBS announcement too soon?

    The WVU Defensive Coaching Staff for 2014 sounds like Abbot & Costello's routing "Whose on First". Sadly WVU has some talented players now on defense, but they don't know who is coaching them, and neither does WVU.

  • steve

    Can we get someone to take Holgerson's place????????????????

  • Blue N Gold

    How about Tom Bradley? I would have seriously considered him and his experience since he was the DC at Penn State

  • Phil M.

    Love my EERS !! and I'm sure Tony is a great guy and a good coach.

    However, this is not a glowing endorsement for the current coaching staff's future. If Oliver thought they were going to get the job done he would have gone after the very best DC we could financially afford.

    But if you're going to cut your loses and hire a new staff at the end of the year or you're waiting to see what they do this year, you go this route.

    He's not stupid and he's not going to invest a lot of monney in another DC if he brings in a new coach and another coaching staff in 2015.

    Otherwise to compete at the top of the Big 12 you go after a big time coordinator.

  • Facial

    this is a good choice, I see a 7-5 season in route to a winning bowl game.

  • Silence Dogood

    I guess that means they could not find an experienced defensive coordinator out there that wanted to coach for Holgorsen. Or take over a defense that has been one of the worst in college football over the last two years.

    • Troll

      Or just maybe it might mean they think Gibson can get the job done . It's amazing how many people decide to be negative instead of positive. What a sad life many must lead.

  • jay zoom

    good luck with this guy. there will be a 5th defensive coordinator next year. dana wants to run the whole show. MY opinion he does not let his assistants do their jobs. thanks to OLLIE we'll be at the bottom of the totem pole for years to come.

  • TB

    Why does WVU have to be the place to come learn versus hiring an established coordinator? Disadvantage out of the gate.

  • jfk

    Hope the hire works out for both parties, GO MOUNTAINEERS