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Dusty May: Why and Why Not For West Virginia



Dusty May WVU
FAU Athletics

West Virginia and AD Wren Baker are currently at work seeking to find the next leader as head coach of the men’s basketball program. We’re going to take a look at potential candidates over the next couple of weeks, or however long it takes. This series of “why and why not” will include any coach that has been linked with the WVU job in some form, realistic or not.

Dusty May, Florida Atlantic


West Virginia would be dumb to not call Dusty May at the very least. May has been the mid-major darling of college basketball for the past year after taking FAU to the Final Four in 2023. May, who took over Florida Atlantic in 2018, has done an incredible job rebuilding a program with not much history. The Owls made the NCAA Tournament just once before hiring May in 2002. May’s rebuild of FAU has been impressive as they’re seeking back-to-back tournament appearances this weekend during Selection Sunday.

May decided last year to run it back with the majority of his Final Four team, highlighted by Johnell Davis, Vladislav Goldin, Alijah Martin and others. FAU did not lose a single player to the transfer portal after their magical run in March, which is also very impressive in today’s landscape of college basketball. A sign of program building rather than year-by-year building, which Baker mentioned he prefers.

Is it realistic for West Virginia to hire May? Very likely, no.

Why Not

Here’s where things get interesting for both parties.

Things became more unclear when Indiana decided to bring back HC Mike Woodson for the 2024-25 season. May has been linked with the IU job for a while now as he served as a manager under Bobby Knight in the late-90s. The May to Indiana hire would just make a lot of sense. So, what does May do for next year? He’s got two options.

1. Stay at FAU, safer stock security

2. Leave for the high-major job, make more money but risk stock dropping

For May, if he picks door No. 2, he would have a complicated rebuild going on at West Virginia as it’s unclear who will remain player-wise. The transfer portal opens on Monday, so the eligible WVU players have the option to leave before West Virginia makes their hire. If FAU made another run in the NCAA Tournament, who knows how many Mountaineers are left by the time May comes to Morgantown, hypothetically.

May shouldn’t risk his stock while it’s hot, and WVU isn’t going to be an easy turnaround.

For West Virginia, they should want to continue the long-term momentum built by John Beilein and Bob Huggins over the past two decades. WVU’s job is interesting because it’s a top 25 job but it’s not a blue blood. West Virginia should want to be able to have a coach long-term while if a coach does use the program as a stepping stone, it’s to a blue-blood caliber program.

May would use West Virginia as a stepping stone to Indiana whenever the Hoosiers’ job became available. Should May be less desirable to WVU if he only would stay for a year or two? Yes.

Baker mentioned during his press conference on Wednesday that he’s not the type to try and fight for a coach who’s being sought out by copious amounts of competition. Every school with a job opening this offseason should be contacting May.

WV Sports Now will continue this series throughout the next week with other coaching candidates, as well as providing updates on Dusty May.

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