The Times West Virginian

Bob Herzel

September 9, 2009

HERTZEL COLUMN: Holtz a personable coach

MORGANTOWN — There are many pleasures in this world of ours, be they a cold beer on a hot summer’s day, a rare steak and fine glass of wine, a candlelight dinner or the wag of a dog’s tail as you walk into the house after a long day at the office.

Or you can just speak to Skip Holtz.

Perhaps it’s just the name, Skip, but this is a football coach who breaks the stereotype. Seems like everyone named Skip is a personable sort of soul.

He isn’t quite as funny as father, Lou, was, but if you could get past the thought that he was the Notre Dame coach and concentrated on the fact that he is a native of West Virginia, you find that he’s an enjoyable conversationalist.

Holtz, Skip that would be, is the coach at East Carolina, who just happens to be West Virginia’s opponent this Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at Milan Puskar Stadium, and as such he made himself available to the media Tuesday afternoon.

A year ago he made some people at West Virginia wince badly, partly because his Pirates pounded the Mountaineers 24-3 in a rather embarrassingly one-sided affair, but also because they could have avoided such a beating by having hired him back when they went instead for Bill Stewart.

No regrets with Stewart, of course, but let’s just say that Holtz would have been an equally qualified candidate who would have made things here just as interesting as Stewart does with his down-home approach.

We’ll give you a sampling of Holtz’s observations about the Mountaineers, not so much for what he says as he is a football coach and isn’t about to give them anything to pin on their bulletin board but for how he says it.

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Bob Herzel
  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Watson tees off a new century at The Greenbrier

    You knew this was going to be one of those unpredictable, memorable days when you drove into the Greenbrier Resort and headed to the Old White Golf Course and found the best parking place in the joint.
    As Bob Uecker would say, right there in the front rooooow.

    April 20, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Under pressure, NCAA decides to change rules

    At first glance, it appears that they do not go hand-in-hand, a pair of rules changes the NCAA’s Legislative Council approved this week, sending them off for what seems to be smooth sailing toward becoming rules.

    April 18, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU gymnast hopes to stick her final landing

    The reaction, one suspects, was the same as most people who see either a picture of West Virginia University gymnast Hope Sloanhoffer or meet her for the first time in person — a quick double take, maybe even stumbling over the first few words of an introduction.

    April 17, 2014

  • Bussie looks forward to WNBA

    On Tuesday, the weather turned cold, the wind blew and amongst the raindrops that fell a few snowflakes fluttered quietly to Earth.
    It was as if it was a celebration of Asya Bussie being drafted on Monday night by the Minnesota Lynx, champions of the WNBA, with the third selection of the second round, the 15th overall pick of the draft.

    April 16, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Jackie Robinson’s impact extends beyond baseball

    It is Jackie Robinson Day as I sit here writing this today, and I feel as though I am doing it in a world gone mad.
    Every player in Major League Baseball wore No. 42 on Tuesday in honor of Jackie Robinson, the man who took racism’s best shot and integrated the game that was known then as the National Pastime even though it was as white a Ku Klux Klan robe.

    April 16, 2014

  • Gyorko, Padres agree to extension

    Jedd Gyorko, who hasn’t hit much of anything with a .178 start on this season, hit the jackpot on Monday, signing a six-year contract extension with the San Diego Padres for $35 million with a one-year club option at $13 million.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Spring game showed defense has improved

    From Dana Holgorsen’s viewpoint, which was standing right behind the offense, West Virginia’s Gold-Blue Spring Game on Saturday was a rousing success for it showed very little of what the Mountaineers will be in this coming season, probably not even showcasing the man who will direct the offense in the quarterback position.

    April 15, 2014

  • WVU signs guard; Adrian arrested for DUI

    There was something good and something bad for West Virginia men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins this past weekend as Kansas junior college player Tarik Phillip committed to play for the Mountaineers but rising sophomore Nathan Adrian was charged with Under 21 DUI after he was stopped at 1:20 a.m. Sunday for an expired registration sticker.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Garrison still proving he can carry the ball

    The running back raves from the West Virginia coaching this spring have been directly mostly toward Wendell Smallwood, and rest assured he earned every one of them with his versatility, but it was a reborn running back who well may have taken the biggest jump up the depth chart.

    April 14, 2014

  • WVU baseball drops seventh straight game

    One’s athletic skills are tested on a daily basis but every so often other aspects of an athlete’s makeup are tested, often far more important aspects in the game of life.

    April 14, 2014

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