Bill Stewart

Updated: WVU reportedly on the cusp of canning Stewart


It’s already been a turbulent week for the West Virginia program with the rumors that current coach Bill Stewart asked former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporter Colin Dunlap to “dig up dirt” on new offensive coordinator and head-coach-in-waiting Dana Holgorsen.

Now, it appears, provided the following story is true, that the well-documented awkward situation has reached a head.

According to a Sporting News report citing a source close to the situation, WVU is negotiating a buyout for Stewart’s contract and immediately bumping Holgorsen into the head coaching position.

Multiple sources have given CFT conflicting reports, although a very reliable source said Stewart’s attorney would not confirm internal restructuring.

When reached by text message, WVU athletic director Oliver Luck said he could not comment.

Dave Hickman of the Charleston Gazette appeared on College Football Live today and says he’s spoken to Luck every day this week. Hickman said Luck has been mum on the situation after appearing on a Pittsburgh radio show confirming there was “a little bit of drama” internally.

Also, for what it’s worth, Luck will be going on vacation after this week. You can put two and two together on that one.

Holgorsen, booted from a casino late last month for indecent behavior, has been accused of having several run-ins at multiple establishments while intoxicated. WVU later debunked those accusations, but rumors began circulating that it was Stewart and/or his wife, Karen, who were involved in the process of making Holgorsen’s personal life public.

UPDATED 10:20 p.m. ET: Stewart’s attorney, David Hendrickson, has gone on the record to say he does not know of any contract negotiations with his client.

There have been no negotiations,”  Hendrickson told the Charleston Gazette Thursday evening. “I haven’t heard from the athletic department today.”

However, another source reportedly close to the situation went on the record to say “I think you all know where this is headed.”

Butch Jones labels rumor of ‘physical altercation’ with Vols player ‘absolutely ridiculous’

ATHENS, GA - SEPTEMBER 27:  Head coach Butch Jones of the Tennessee Volunteers yells at Marquez North #8 during the game against the Georgia Bulldogs at Sanford Stadium on September 27, 2014 in Athens, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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Already in the crosshairs for his 2-3 team’s late-game failures, Butch Jones now finds himself under increasing scrutiny for something that allegedly happened a couple of months ago.

The website, which features such respected journalists Tony Barnhart and Mike Huguenin among others, reported earlier today that the Tennessee head coach was involved in what was described as a “physical altercation” with senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder during summer camp this past August.  The source close to the program added that practice film that day captured the alleged incident, although it’s unclear if that tapes still exists.

From the site’s report:

The incident occurred during fall camp, about the time that news started to come out about a few offensive linemen who were considering stepping away from the program. Crowder walked off the practice field one day and missed a day or two of practice, and Brett Kendrick and Dylan Wiesman were said to be contemplating their futures. Sources say the players’ actions stemmed from an incident between Jones and Crowder.

The website also made a Freedom of Information request seeking any correspondence between the university and the Crowder family be turned over, but writes that UT “administrators said any sort of letter or correspondence that may or may not have happened was covered under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.”

Monday, Jones labeled what began as message-board speculation that he had struck one of his Vols players as “absolutely ridiculous.” The Knoxville News Sentinel contacted Crowder’s father, with the paper writing that “he had no comment and did not want to give validation to message boards.”

At least publicly, the university has yet to address the allegations.  Jones will get yet another chance to address the speculation with the media in the very near future.

Tulsa loses second-leading receiver to season-ending injury

NORMAN, OK - SEPTEMBER 14:   Wide receiver Keevan Lucas #2 of the Tulsa Golden Hurricane just misses a pass against the Oklahoma Sooners September 14, 2013 at Gaylord Family-Oklahoma Memorial Stadium in Norman, Oklahoma. The Sooners defeated the Golden Hurricane 51-20.  (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
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One of the most productive pass-catching duos in the country has been cut in half.

Tulsa head coach Philip Montgomery confirmed Tuesday that Keevan Lucas sustained a torn patellar tendon  in the third quarter of Saturday’s loss to Houston.  As a result, the wide receiver will miss the remainder of the 2015 season.

“He’s such an emotional leader for us and such a great kid,” the first-year coach said. “We’ll have to make a few adjustments offensively and move some people around and try to make sure we’ve got guys in the right spot but also guys who will step up and be ready to play.”

Lucas is currently second on the team with 26 receptions and 409 receiving yards, behind Keyarris Garrett‘s 33 and 539. His five receiving touchdowns, though, are tops on the team.

Montgomery expects Lucas to be healthy enough to participate in spring practice next year.