Current CUSA Coach of the Year Doc Holliday will no longer continue as the head man at Marshall. He announced the decision on his twitter account with a statement:
I have been informed that Marshall President Dr. Jerry Gilbert will not be extending my contract as Head Football Coach at Marshall University.
To Athletic Director Mike Hamrick and former University President Dr. Stephen Kopp, thank you for the opportunity in naming me Marshall’s 30th Head Football Coach, 11 years ago.
To every coach, administrator/staff, medical support staff, the Big Green, and Pastor Steve “rev” Harvey… thank you for your dedication to this program. You make Marshall special.
To each athlete, thank you for your dedication and sacrifice for Marshall University and our program. You are the reason I coach. Our coaching staff and Marshall will always be here for you.
To the Marshall students, alumni, fans, and the football community, thank you for your support of our program and players over the last 11 years. I’ve always said that this program means more to our community than any other program in the country. It’s your continued support hat makes it that way.
I am proud of what have accomplished together both academically and athletically. We’ve been able to graduate student-athletes and develop them to their highest potential while competing for championships.
As the head football coach for Marshall, I’ve always strived to build and leave the program better than I found it. 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 proud.
Marshall will always be a special place for me. We Are … Marshall, We Play For ‘The 75’.
There was a swell of disappointment following the fall from a ranked team to three straight losses (including the championship game at home) to end the year. Marshall had a nice season, but nice seasons were apparently not enough. Doc Holliday won a CUSA title, and lost two others including this year’s game to UAB. He was 6-2 in bowl games. He finished his time with a record of 85-54.
There is, of course, more to this “firing” than the surface suggests.
For some time now the state government in the form of Governor Jim Justice has wanted to rid Marshall of Holliday and replace him with a program legend.
Here is former Marshall beat writer Doug Smock giving some context:
Update 1.5.21: Chuck Landon says this was a university decision. No government involvement.
Twitter and current players are advocating for Brad Lambert but if this is truly a push by the state government (looks like it) then they surely have a coach in mind.