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Doc Holliday Out at Marshall; Could a WVU Assistant be Among Candidates?

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(photo via herdzone.com)

Marshall University announced on Monday that Doc Holliday, the Thundering Herd’s head football coach and a former West Virginia University player and assistant coach, would not be back in 2021.

Holliday coach at Marshall for 11 seasons, compiling an 85-54 record with a Conference USA championship in 2014 along with title game appearances in 2013 and 2020. In those 11 seasons with Holliday at the helm, the Herd went to eight bowl games and won six of them.

“As the head football coach for Marshall, I’ve always strived to build and leave the program better than I found it,” Holliday wrote in a tweet sent Monday morning. “The program and players are the most important thing, more important than any individual coach or staff who has the privilege to be in Huntington. I’m proud to leave the program in a great place. We took a lot of pride in building a winning and clean program by doing things the right way with the goal of making Marshall and this community pound.”

According to Yahoo’s Pete Thamel, the call to remove Holiday — whose contract with MU was set to run out this summer — came from above Marshall athletic director Mike Hamrick.

Thamel’s report was denied by Marshall president Jerome Gilbert, with MU’s attention now turning to who will replace Holliday.

According to The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman, West Virginia offensive coordinator Gerad Parker is, “expected to get strong consideration according to sources familiar with the search.” Parker was born in Huntington and grew up nearby in Kentucky. After his collegiate playing career at Kentucky — where he was a teammate of current WVU head coach Neal Brown — Parker’s journey through the coaching ranks that landed him most recently in Morgantown included a stop at Marshall in 2011 and 2012 as Holliday’s receivers coach.

Parker, however, is not the only person with ties to Morgantown being talked about as the potential new football coach at Marshall. Feldman’s report also listed former WVU quarterback JaJuan Seider — currently the running backs coach at Penn State who held the same job at both WVU and Marshall — as a potential target. Tony Gibson, a Boone County native who coached at West Virginia under both Rich Rodriguez and Dana Holgorsen, was also mentioned as a possibility by Feldman.

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Tom Bragg covers WVU, Marshall, high schools and other sports for West Virginia Sports Now. Tom spent more than a decade as a sports journalist based in West Virginia covering high school, college, youth and professional sports for newspapers in Huntington, Fairmont and Charleston before joining WVSN in 2020. Tom is a graduate of Marshall University's W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

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