Doc Holliday Was 2020 C-USA Coach of the Year, Still Got Fired

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College football can be as brutal off the field as it is on it. That proved to be true on Monday when Marshall head coach Doc Holliday announced that his contract was not being extended. In other words, he is being fired.

That happens to college coaches all the time, but it rarely happens less than two weeks after that coach is named the best in the conference. Right before Christmas, Holliday was named Conference USA’s Coach of the Year.

Now, the 63-year-old is looking for a job. Holliday released a statement on Monday regarding the news.

“I have been informed that Marshall President Dr. Jerry Gilbert will not be extending my contract as Head Football Coach at Marshall University,” Holliday said. “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 that makes it that way. I am proud of what we 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.’ Go Herd.”

In his 11 years with the Thundering Herd, Holliday went 85-54 (.612) with three appearances in the conference championship and one Conference USA title. That is not bad at all, but unfortunately, it wasn’t good enough.

Perhaps the AD, the administration and the boosters were unhappy with the way Marshall finished the 2020 season. After starting the year 7-0 with an appearance in the Top 25, they proceeded to drop their final three games. Those losses were to Rice (0-20), UAB (13-22) and Buffalo (10-17) in the Camellia Bowl.

Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.

Written by Clint Lamb

Clint Lamb is a College Football Writer for OutKick. Managing Editor for Roll Tide Wire. Sports radio host for The Bullpen on 730/103.9 The UMP. Co-host for The 'Bama Beat podcast through The Tuscaloosa News and


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  1. Word on the street back home in WV is that Governor Jim Justice (owner of the Greenbrier Resort too) got involved. Justice wanted Holiday gone a few years back but couldn’t make it happen. Typical dirty West Virginia politician. It just wouldn’t be WV without that element. Also, Marshall’s best running back (Brandon Knox) abruptly quit the team before the bowl with no real explanation. Who knows? Not sure the Herd will find anyone better at their level though.

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