"We have a new member of the family - a gentleman who is not a stranger to many. He is a former Mountaineer -- as player and coach," head coach Bill Stewart said in revealing the worst-kept secret of the coaching carousel. "John 'Doc' Holliday will come on board as associate head coach, director of recruiting and as the fullbacks and tight ends coach.
"We are very excited to get who we think is the most renowned, topnotch recruiter in college football today," Stewart continued. "I am very excited that Doc has decided to come back to his alma mater. He will be a tremendous asset to the West Virginia football program and to our Mountaineer family."
Stewart also emphasized his belief that Holliday's renown as a recruiter overshadows his skills as a coach on the field.
"It goes without saying that his accolades as a recruiter are outstanding. But let's not forget that he has coached on both sides on the football in Division 1A," Stewart said. "I worked with Doc briefly when I came here in the 2000 season. I have known men like him and Steve Dunlap for 30 years. I think his recruiting will be an instant hit throughout the ranks, especially in Florida. But peoole forget sometimes about someone's value when they are tagged as an expert in one particular field. But this man has coached in three outstanding programs, on both sides of the ball, and that's what really excites me. You bring in a guy who is not only a recruiter, but also an outstanding coach."
Stewart summed up his statement with a reaffirmation of his faith in Holliday.
"I want as many knowlegeable people to help us keep things going at West Virginia. Doc has coached all phases of the game. I speak for many people in saying, 'Welcome home.' He is very excited about coming home. He will be a valuable asset to the offensive staff."
"At this point, if all goes as planned, Doc and I will be in a home together [recruiting] on Monday, and it will be in the most outstanding lineman on our board," Stewart said. Although not allowed to name names, that target is almost certainly Parkersburg High School offensive lineman Josh Jenkins.
Holliday will quickly begin other recruiting duties for West Virginia, concentrating on keeping existing players in the fold and targeting a handful of new names to the process.
With three staff members yet to be hired," Stewart is still concentrating on quality of choice over speed of selection. He admitted that timeframes were important, but reemphasized that making a quick hire was not more important than making a good one.
"We are still in the process of visiting, talking and sharing ideas about the positions yet to be filled," Stewart said.